By SCOTT THUMAN, Sinclair Broadcast Group
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (CIRCA via SBG) — If you didn’t know his name before this weekend, you likely do now: Roger Stone, a longtime adviser and friend of President Donald Trump, was arrested by the FBI as part of an early-morning raid at his home Friday in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Federal investigators say he lied to Congress and tried to tamper with a witness, in order to obstruct the Russia investigation.
He sat down with SBG's chief political correspondent, Scott Thuman, inside his home to defend himself and discuss who else could be next.
Thuman and his crew were the first journalists granted access inside Stone’s home where he described the raid that he’s called an "excessive" show of force.
Here is a brief portion of their conversation specific to the charges, as Stone insists he broke no laws but admits, "I had lapses of memory that are immaterial" which may have lead to the confusion over his testimony. But insists he broke no laws.
Thuman: “Do you regret your actions at all? Even if they weren’t in your words, ‘criminal’?”
Stone: “I regret the way they have been depicted. I mean I essentially took a tip, a solid tip, which was entirely legal and then combined it with information that anyone can find online to hype the WikiLeaks disclosures to get maximum voter and media attention to them when they came. That's called politics.”
The FBI claims Stone lied about alleged, coordinated discussions between the Trump campaign and WikiLeaks, which released hacked emails damaging to Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Stone admits he had a lapse in memory when he denied certain interactions during his question-and-answer session with a Congressional committee, but insists he didn’t break the law and describes his arrest as political retaliation.
Thuman: “How high up do you think this is going to go? The biggest name to take a fall, you think?”
Stone: “Again, I continue to read that Donald Trump Jr. is in the crosshairs. Now it’s hard for me to understand because there's nothing illegal about the meeting at Trump Tower.”
Thuman: “Do you think there is evidence that there is a connection out there right now that could lead to the president directly?”
Stone: “Absolutely not. Certainly nothing that I know of. He and I never discussed this.”
Thuman: "Would it surprise you if somehow evidence does come forward that ties the president?”
Stone: “Yes, yes it really would.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders claims Stone’s arrest has nothing to do with the president.
Stone is set to appear in court in Washington on Tuesday.
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