Former Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, a day after testifying to Congress about his connection in events leading to the investigation of Russian interference in the presidential election, said Friday he believes he was framed and is considering fighting back against the agreement he reached to plead guilty to lying to the FBI.
"To have to serve even one day in jail for something, that now it seems was completely orchestrated," Papadopoulos told Fox News' "Fox and Friends" co-host Brian Kilmeade. "I was framed in many ways. It's just something by principle and by precedent. I would never want another American to go through something like I'm going through again."
The Department of Justice claimed Papadopoulos in 2016 got drunk in a London bar and told an Australian that Russians were in possession of emails stolen from Hillary Clinton. He was questioned about the encounter and agreed to plead guilty in 2017 of making false statements to the FBI, leading to a 14-day jail sentence. He served just one day, and said Friday even that was too much.
He explained that before the election, he had been working to help Israel connect with Greek officials to get a buyer for their oil and energy markets and believes that that activity put up a red flag to the Obama administration.
He also captured the attention of then-candidate Trump, who added him to his foreign policy team in an unpaid position. Soon after, Papadopoulos gave an interview with the Times of London criticizing Prime Minister David Cameron for the comments he'd made against Trump, at which time "my life completely turned upside down."
"I was being followed in London," he said. "I had officials from the U.S. Ambassador which seemingly intelligence officials reaching out to me."
However, he said he never lost faith in Trump, and believes the experience was "some sort of plot" to undermine Trump if he was elected.
"I had absolutely no contacts in Russia," Papadopoulos said. "How on Earth could a man like me be at the center of a Russian conspiracy unless I was completely framed by western intelligence to make it seem that Papadopoulos was interacting with Russians and that he is the patsy that started this whole investigation?" he said.
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