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Judge hands down first sentence in Mueller probe

Judge hands down first sentence in Mueller probe

Here's what you need to know about van der Zwaan, one of 19 people charged in the special counsel's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election so far.

But U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, citing the need to deter others from lying in an investigation of worldwide importance, said incarceration was necessary. He was also ordered to pay a $20,000 fine. Late Monday night, Mueller said in a court filing that a separate memo from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein specifically detailed his mandate, and he's consulted with Rosenstein over the course of the investigation.

He made the false statements to Mueller's investigators in November.

"What I did was wrong", he said to the judge, reading quietly from a single sheet of paper after his defense attorney and the prosecutor each spoke. "I apologize to the court, my wife, and my family".

Jackson also said his signs of remorse were relatively "muted". Van Der Zwaan "demonstrated a moral compass that was off-kilter".

Dutch lawyer Alex van der Zwaan, 33, was sentenced to 30 days in prison for lying to investigators about contacts with ex-Trump aide Rick Gates.

Van der Zwaan worked with Gates and Manafort during his tenure in London at the prestigious law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, which fired him a year ago.

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In pleading guilty, van der Zwaan admitted that he withheld and deleted emails, and also that he lied to Federal Bureau of Investigation agents about previous communications with Manafort protege Gates and a person who worked for Manafort in Ukraine identified as "Person A".

His attorneys asked for a lenient sentence so van der Zwaan could be with his wife during a hard pregnancy, and Mueller's team offered no recommendations on a sentence.

"There's a history of conduct that's either criminal or shows a lack of morality", Weissmann said.

Van der Zwaan's attorney, William Jay Schwartz, asked the judge to impose only a fine and allow his client to leave the country, saying he had already been punished enough and should receive credit for returning to the United States previous year after lying to Mueller's investigators to correct the record. He had asked to be home in London by August for the birth of his first child. He is the first person to be sentenced in the Russian Federation probe. Van der Zwaan was contrite at his sentencing hearing in federal court in Washington, DC.

The indictment also alleges that van der Zwaan deleted an email between himself and Person A sent around the same time as those conversations - and told the Federal Bureau of Investigation that he "did not know" where the email was.

That's why van der Zwann turned over evidence in December 2017, Schwartz said, and didn't toss it into the river near his onetime office in London.

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