Michael Flynn and his relationship with Russia: a timeline of events

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WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) - Michael Flynn's role in Russian meddling of the 2016 presidential election was the center of conversation on Monday after former acting attorney general Sally Yates and former director of national intelligence James Clapper testified in a hearing. Here is a timeline of what has occurred.

2012: Flynn was nominated by President Barack Obama as the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency

2014: Flynn was “forced out,” according to the Washington Post. Flynn didn’t get along with the Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr. Clapper informed Flynn at the time that the administration was ready to change directions.

2015: Michael Flynn developed a relationship with Russia’s state television network. He attended and spoke at a gala about world affairs and was paid $45,000 for his duties. He would subsequently make appearances on the network, according to Politico.

February 2016: Flynn was named onto the Trump campaign as a security adviser. Trump almost considered Flynn as his pick for vice president.

July 2016: Flynn speaks at the Republican National Convention and declared “if I did a tenth of what she did, I’d be in jail today.” He also led the crowd in cheering “Lock her up!”

November 2016: President Trump beats Hillary Clinton in 2016 presidential election.

December 2016: Flynn is in frequent contact with Russia’s ambassador to the United States. After the Obama administration instilled sanctions against Russia for meddling in elections, Flynn spoke with Ambassador Sergey Kislyak on the same day.

January 2017: It was revealed that counterintelligence officials were investigating communications between Flynn and Russian officials. It was also revealed that the Senate Intelligence Committee was looking into the possibility of collusion between Trump officials and Russia. Former acting attorney general Sally Yates told the White House she believed Gen. Flynn could be blackmailed by the Russian government.

February 2017: The New York Times reported the Army was investigating if Flynn “received money from the Russian government during a trip he took to Moscow in 2015.” Flynn also misled Vice President Pence. Flynn denied he had conversations with Russia's ambassador and Pence repeated the claim during national television interviews. After the transgression, Flynn resigned from the Trump administration as a national security adviser.

March 2017: Gen. Flynn offers to testify and be interviewed about possible connections between the Russian government and Trump's campaign in exchange for immunity. The Senate declined Flynn's immunity request.

April 2017: The Pentagon’s inspector general opened an investigation into whether Gen. Flynn accepted money from foreign governments without permission. Flynn also revealed in papers he filed that he was paid $500,000 by a client to represent the interests of the Turkish government while on the campaign trail.

May 2017: Sally Yates and James Clapper testified in a congressional hearing about Russia's role in the 2016 presidential election and how Gen. Flynn was involved. Yates was quoted as saying the following: "We felt like it was critical that we get this information to the White House, in part because the vice president was making false statements to the public and because we believed that Gen. Flynn was possibly compromised," Yates said.