WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. judge on Friday sentenced Republican political consultant Samuel Patten to 36 months of probation, 500 hours of community service and a $5,000 fine in a case spun out of U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe.
Patten, 47, pleaded guilty in August to communicating with U.S. lawmakers and news media organizations on behalf of a Russia-aligned political party in Ukraine called the Opposition Bloc without disclosing that work to the Justice Department, in violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), among other offenses.
Patten is a former business partner of Konstantin Kilimnik, a Russian national indicted by Mueller and accused of having ties to Russian intelligence.
In Patten’s guilty plea he also admitted to arranging for a U.S. citizen to act as a straw purchaser to pay $50,000 for four tickets to the inauguration of Republican President Donald Trump on behalf of a Ukrainian oligarch, who reimbursed Patten through a Cypriot account.
Patten, who spoke briefly at the hearing, said he “fully recognized” that he committed serious criminal conduct.
“I behaved as though the law didn’t apply to me and that was wrong,” he said.
U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson said Patten’s violation of FARA…