By Michael Hernandez
WASHINGTON (AA) - Roger Stone, the Republican operative and staunch ally of U.S. President Donald Trump, was sentenced Thursday to 40 months in federal prison for lying to Congress and federal investigators.
U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson also ordered Stone to serve two years probation and pay $20,000 in fines, according to reports. He was convicted in November on seven counts of obstruction, witness tampering and lying to Congress tied to Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
Stone's case has roiled the Justice Department as four prosecutors working on the case resigned after Attorney General William Barr intervened after they made a sentencing recommendation of seven to nine years in prison.
The action followed Trump's public denunciation of the recommendation for his confidante, calling it a "miscarriage of justice" that cannot be allowed in a Twitter screed.
"This is a horrible and very unfair situation. The real crimes were on the other side, as nothing happens to them," he said.
Speculation has built that Trump could potentially pardon Stone, meaning he would either only serve part of his sentence or never spend a day behind bars, depending on when Trump might issue the pardon as well as its extent.
Trump has yet to weigh in after Stone's sentencing.