Donald Trump's former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, texted a former business partner during Trump's inauguration in January saying that sanctions against Russian Federation were about to be "ripped up", according to a U.S. congressman.
The change would allow a business venture Flynn had worked on - nuclear power plants - to be built with the former partner.
These statements from Flynn to Alex Copson, managing partner of ACU Strategic Partners, reveal Flynn's attempt to "manipulate the course of worldwide nuclear policy for the financial gain of his former business partners", Democratic representative Elijah Cummings wrote in a letter Wednesday. Cummings described the account in a letter Wednesday to the panel's Republican chairman, Rep. Trey Gowdy of SC.
Quoting a confidential informant, Rep. Elijah Cummings, the top Democrat on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, wrote that Alex Copson, managing partner of ACU Strategic Partners, told the informant that Flynn would see that the sanctions on Moscow were "ripped up". Copson, who had previously employed Flynn to advise on the deal to build nuclear power plants with Russian Federation, told the whistleblower that it was the "best day of my life". Now Cummings wants to look into the matter.
Mr. Cummings said Mr. Gowdy should subpoena the White House and the Flynn Intelligence Group, Mr. Flynn's former company, for documents that the House committee had requested in March but had not yet been provided.
The whistle-blower told Mr Cummings that he saw a text from Flynn that was sent on Jan 20 "approximately ten minutes" into Mr Trump's speech when Flynn was sitting in the audience.
Flynn had assured his former associate that USA sanctions against Russian Federation would immediately be "ripped up" by the Trump administration, a move that would help facilitate the deal, the associate told the witness.
Flynn, a retired Army lieutenant general and former high-ranking intelligence officer, pleaded guilty last week to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about his discussions with the then-Russian ambassador, Sergey Kislyak, about the sanctions that day after they were imposed.
"Although this individual was extremely hesitant to come forward - and still fears retaliation - the whistleblower has chose to do so now because this individual feels duty bound as a citizen to make this disclosure", he wrote.
"As chairman of the Benghazi select committee, you pursued your investigation of Hillary Clinton during an ongoing criminal investigation", Mr. Cummings wrote.
The company did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.
Cummings said he had found the unnamed informant to be "authentic, credible and reliable", and offered to produce the person for Gowdy.
In various filings in 2016 and 2017, Flynn did not initially disclose his connection to ACU and foreign contacts he made while advising the firm.