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Former Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos asked the president for a pardon

Key Points
  • George Papadopoulos says Tuesday that his lawyers have "formally" asked President Donald Trump for a pardon.
  • "My understanding is that my lawyers have formally submitted an application," Papadopoulos tells CNBC in a text message.
  • Trump himself has flirted with the possibility of pardoning some of his former associates caught up in the probe, which he had often decried as a "witch hunt."
Former Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos arrives at a closed-door hearing before the House Judiciary and Oversight Committee October 25, 2018 at the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.
Alex Wong | Getty Images

George Papadopoulos, the former Trump campaign advisor who served 12 days in jail after pleading guilty to charges lodged by special counsel Robert Mueller, said Tuesday that his lawyers have "formally" asked President Donald Trump for a pardon.

"My understanding is that my lawyers have formally submitted an application," Papadopoulos told CNBC in a text message.

The White House did not immediately respond to CNBC's request for comment on the claim from the former foreign policy aide to Trump's campaign.

Papadopoulos' lawyer, Caroline Polisi, did not respond to CNBC's inquiries. She told The Washington Post in an interview published Monday that she had indeed submitted an application for a pardon, saying, "It would be malpractice not to."

Some of the figures who were convicted or have pleaded guilty in Mueller's Russia probe — which came to an end Friday after nearly two years of investigation — have been suspected of seeking pardons from Trump.

Trump himself has flirted with the possibility of pardoning some of his former associates caught up in the probe, which he had often decried as a "witch hunt." The president has denied any wrongdoing in the probe of Russian interference, possible Trump-campaign collusion and possible obstruction of justice related to the 2016 election.

Attorney General William Barr's four-page summary of Mueller's final report said that the probe found no evidence of collusion, and that Mueller made no determination about whether Trump obstructed justice.

Papadopoulos, 31, pleaded guilty in October 2017 to lying to the FBI about his contacts with London-based professor Joseph Mifsud, who told Papadopoulos in late April 2016 that Russians had "dirt" on Trump's campaign rival, Hillary Clinton.

He was sentenced to 14 days in jail, but only served a dozen days in an Oxford, Wis., federal prison. He was also sentenced to one year of supervised release, and slapped with a $9,500 fine.

Papadopoulos also said in an interview with Reuters on Tuesday that he was considering withdrawing his guilty plea — a move he has floated before, but one with extra weight in light of his claim in an upcoming book that reportedly contradicts what he told a federal judge under oath.

"I realize that I misspoke to the FBI," Papadopoulos wrote in "Deep State Target," according to The Wall Street Journal.

At his sentencing in Washington, D.C., district court in September, however, Papadopoulos said that he "made a terrible mistake" by lying.