An indicted ex-political adviser to President Trump is coming to Belleview next week.
Roger Stone, who is under indictment on charges brought by Special Counsel Robert Mueller during his Russian collusion probe, will be at Pasta Faire restaurant (10401 U.S. Hwy. 27/441) on Wednesday, Aug. 21 from 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
Stone will conduct a meet-and-greet, make a lunch presentation and sign copies of his newest book, “The Myth of Russian Collusion: The Inside Story of How Donald Trump REALLY Won,” which was released in February. The book is a follow-up to his 2016 work titled, “The Making of the President 2016: How Donald Trump Orchestrated a Revolution.”
Stone, who also worked on campaigns for Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Jack Kemp and Bob Dole, has pleaded not guilty to all of the charges brought against him and is awaiting a Nov. 5 trial, where he could face up to 50 years in prison if found guilty on all counts.
Earlier this month, a federal judge rejected four motions from Stone’s legal team contesting his indictment on charges of witness tampering, obstruction of justice and making false statements to Congress about attempts to reach WikiLeaks in 2016 to obtain information that could have helped the Trump campaign. He claimed he was unfairly singled out by Mueller for his outspoken support of Trump.
But U.S. District Judge Amy Berman disagreed and wrote that Stone has “no one but himself to blame” for the indictment. That decision cleared the way for his trial to begin in November.
Stone has appeared twice in The Villages, with his latest visit coming in April when he spoke to members of Villagers for Trump, a grassroots organization that formed a little more than a year ago and now boasts more than 1,700 members. At the packed gathering, Stone, who is forbidden by a gag order from discussing his indictment or Mueller’s investigation, talked about his life since his arrest in January, when he was taken from his South Florida home in shackles.
“Over 38,000 Americans have contributed to my legal defense fund,” he said in February. “I find the reaction that people offer me, not only their prayers but their contributions, really heartening.”
Stone said that he needs to raise $2 million to mount a solid defense as he fights the charges against him. His fund, Stonedefensefund.com, topped $100,000 earlier this year
“I pled not guilty and I will be vindicated,” he said. “But that takes a herculean and most expensive effort.”
Stone blamed some of his woes on the mainstream media, saying they had been predicting for two years that he would be indicted for treason, conspiracy or colluding with Russia – all charges he isn’t facing.
“I’ve lost my home, my savings, my insurance, my car, and to a great degree, my ability to make a living by speaking about politics,” he said, referring to the gag order placed on him. “So, I don’t have the wherewithal to pay for my own legal defense or I would gladly do so. I have no choice but to count on, hopefully before it’s over, millions of Americans who support me and support the president.”
Stone said he first encouraged Trump to run for president in 1988, and then again 2000 and 2012. He added that regardless of the outcome of his trial, one thing won’t change.
“As I have for the last 40 years, I stand with President Donald Trump,” he said. “Donald Trump will never quit trying to make America great again and I will never quit trying to clear my name.”