WASHINGTON (AP) — Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn will invoke his Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination as he notifies a Senate panel that he won’t hand over documents in the probe into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter.
The notification will come in a letter to the Senate Intelligence committee expected later Monday. The person providing details spoke on condition anonymity in order to discuss private interactions between Flynn and the committee.
Flynn’s decision comes less than two weeks after the committee issued a subpoena for Flynn’s personal documents.
Legal experts have said Flynn was unlikely to turn over the personal documents without immunity because he would be waiving some of his constitutional protections by doing so. Flynn has previously sought immunity from “unfair prosecution” to cooperate with the committee.
The Senate committee is one of several congressional inquiries investigating possible collusion between Russia and President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign. Flynn is also the target of other congressional investigations as well as an ongoing FBI counterintelligence probe and a separate federal investigation in Virginia.
Flynn, a retired Army lieutenant general, was fired from his position as Trump’s national security adviser in February. At the time, Trump said he fired Flynn because he misled senior administration officials, including the vice president, about his contacts with Russian officials.
Members of key congressional committees are pledging a full public airing as to why former FBI Director James Comey was ousted amid an intensifying investigation into Russia’s interference with the U.S. election.
In Sunday show appearances, both Republican and Democratic lawmakers said they will press Comey in hearings as to whether he ever felt that Trump tried to interfere with his FBI work. Others are insisting on seeing any White House or FBI documents that detail conversations between the two, following a spate of news reports that Comey had kept careful records.
Comey was fired by Trump earlier this month. The former FBI director agreed to testify before the Senate intelligence committee after the Memorial Day holiday.