Want the best of VICE News straight to your inbox? Sign up here.
President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Wednesday morning to congratulate Attorney General William Barr and slam the now-former prosecutors in the Roger Stone case, who all withdrew from the case Tuesday night after Barr’s went over their heads and intervened for a shorter sentence.
Following some patented color commentary on the New Hampshire presidential primary and an attack on federal judge Amy Berman Jackson, who's presiding in Stone's trial, Trump tweeted his praise for Barr “for taking charge of a case that was totally out of control and perhaps should not have even been brought.”
Stone, 67, is a decades-long friend of Trump and was a close adviser during the 2016 election and beyond.
Trump then turned his ire on the prosecutors. “Rogue prosecutors maybe? The Swamp!” Trump tweeted.
In November, Stone was convicted of obstructing a congressional investigation, witness tampering, and five counts of making false statements to Congress. On Monday, prosecutors submitted a sentencing memo to Judge Jackson recommending Stone serve between seven and nine years.
On early Tuesday morning, Trump tweeted that the recommended sentence was a “miscarriage of justice!”, and then Barr’s DOJ rushed to condemn the recommended sentence. The DOJ submitted an updated sentencing memo Tuesday saying the previous memo “does not accurately reflect the Department of Justice’s position on what would be a reasonable sentence in this matter.”
“The government respectfully submits that a sentence of incarceration far less than 87 to 108 months’ imprisonment would be reasonable under the circumstances,” assistant U.S. Attorney John Crabb Jr., who filed his notice of appearance with the court on the same day, wrote in the new filing.
By the end of the day, all four prosecutors — assistant U.S. attorneys Jonathan Kravis and Michael Marando, and special assistant U.S. attorneys Aaron Zelinsky and Adam Jed — notified the court that they were withdrawing from the case.
Cover: Attorney General William Barr arrives before President Donald Trump delivers his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020. (Leah Millis/Pool via AP)