Roger Stone Faces Judge After Posting Her Image With Crosshairs




 

(Bloomberg) -- Roger Stone said he's sorry. It may be too late.

On Monday, Stone, a sometime adviser to President Donald Trump who faces charges of lying to Congress and obstructing a federal investigation, posted a photo of U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson on his Instagram account, along with a short diatribe saying she's the judge overseeing his "upcoming show trial." Beside the head shot of Jackson was an image of what looked like rifle-scope crosshairs.

After the post caught the attention of social media, Stone took it down and apologized to the judge, conceding it was improper. "I had no intention of disrespecting the court and humbly apologize to the court for the transgression," he wrote in a court filing.

On Thursday, Stone will appear before Jackson as she weighs whether to tighten a gag order or change the terms of his bail. She may even lock him up.

"The judge has very little option other than to revoke his bond and take him in to custody," former federal prosecutor Ryan Fayhee said, explaining there's really only one way to interpret the juxtaposition of Jackson's head and the crosshairs. "It was a threat to the judge."

More on Roger Stone's Instagram

Stone, 66, has offered other explanations, saying on Instagram that the photo was cribbed from the internet and that the gun-sight imagery is the logo of Corruption Central, the group that originally posted the picture. In interviews, he's described it as both a Celtic and occult symbol.

But he also described Jackson in the Instagram post as "an Obama appointed Judge who dismissed the Benghazi charges against Hillary Clinton and incarcerated Paul Manafort prior to his conviction for any crime. #fixisin."

Fayhee said Stone's excuses will likely fall flat. Using the judge's photo alone would have been out of bounds, but the crosshairs imagery puts it beyond the pale. "With the public watching, and what can only reasonably be interpreted as a threat, I think she revokes" his bail.

Stone worked on Trump's campaign in 2015 and remained in contact with the candidate, who went on to become president. He's accused of lying to House intelligence committee members about his communications, through intermediaries, with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. He's also accused of pressuring people not to contradict his committee testimony.

He has pleaded not guilty.

Stone's lawyers didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Stone Timeline per Indictment

Jackson does have less punitive means at her disposal than jailing Stone.

New York criminal defense lawyer Doug Burns said the judge could scold Stone or bar him from using social media. She could also order Stone, who is free on a personal recognizance bond, to put up money to remain out of jail.

"The judge obviously has tremendous power," he said. "She is either going to give him a good old-fashioned tongue lashing, or she does have the power to alter or in fact revoke his bail."

Stone has argued against a gag order, saying he needs to speak publicly to raise money and pay his lawyers. The Instagram post had a link to Stone's defense fund. His Florida home, where he was arrested by the FBI in an early morning raid last month, had a "for rent" sign posted near his driveway Wednesday.

Jackson oversaw the cases of Manafort, Trump's former campaign manager, and his right-hand man, Rick Gates. She issued gag orders on them and their lawyers.

Just a month after she issued the gag order on Manafort, the political consultant was called into court to explain his role in writing a newspaper article for a Ukrainian newspaper, putting a positive spin on his consulting work there.

He was let go with a warning. Six months later, though, after prosecutors accused Manafort of tampering with potential witnesses, Jackson threw him in jail.

"This is not middle school," she told Manafort's lawyers. "I can't take his cellphone."

The case is U.S. v. Stone, 1:19-cr-00018, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia (Washington).

To contact the reporter on this story: Andrew Harris in Washington at aharris16@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: David Glovin at dglovin@bloomberg.net, Joe Schneider

For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

COMMENTS

More Related News

With recession fears rising, here
With recession fears rising, here's how to find stability when Wall Street has you on edge

Buzz about a recession is building. Wall Street saw an 800-point drop on Aug. 14. So what should savers do if they're trying to protect their money?

Trump regrets not raising tariffs on China higher, White House says
Trump regrets not raising tariffs on China higher, White House says

President Donald Trump wishes he had raised tariffs on Beijing even higher, the White House said on Sunday, seeking to clarify earlier remarks that suggested Trump regretted his decision on Friday to escalate his trade war with China. Trump raised eyebrows during a meeting with British Prime Minister

Powerful, obscure law is basis for Trump
Powerful, obscure law is basis for Trump 'order' on trade

President Donald Trump is threatening to use the emergency authority granted by a powerful but obscure federal law to make good on his tweeted "order" to U.S. businesses to cut ties in China amid a spiraling trade war between the two nations. China's announcement Friday that it was raising tariffs on $75 billion in U.S. imports sent Trump into a rage and White House aides scrambling for a response. Trump fired off on Twitter, declaring American companies "are hereby ordered to immediately start looking for an alternative to China." He later clarified that he was threatening to make use of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act in the trade war, raising questions about the...

Mon dieu! Donald Trump arrives at G7 summit in France amid tensions, threat of tariffs on French wines
Mon dieu! Donald Trump arrives at G7 summit in France amid tensions, threat of tariffs on French wines

Fears of a global recession and a mélange of other issues awaited President Donald Trump and other G7 leaders as they arrived in Biarritz, France.

Danish leader speaks with Trump amid Greenland dispute
Danish leader speaks with Trump amid Greenland dispute

Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen has had a phone conversation with U.S. President Donald Trump amid a dispute about Greenland, her office said Friday. Earlier this week, Trump scrapped a visit to Denmark by saying that Frederiksen was "nasty" when she rejected his idea of buying Greenland as an absurdity. Both leaders spoke late Thursday, and Danish media reported that the call was "constructive." Frederiksen's office says details of the discussion won't be released.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: Latin America

facebook
Hit "Like"
Don't miss any important news
Thanks, you don't need to show me this anymore.