Judge considers gag order in Roger Stone case, blasts ‘public relations campaign’

The federal judge presiding over the case against former Trump adviser Roger Stone said Friday she is considering imposing a gag order, citing the defendant’s spate of public comments and interviews about his indictment.

During a hearing in court Friday, U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson said she has not yet made up her mind on instituting a gag order on the defendant and attorneys in the case, but gave both sides a deadline of Feb. 8 to submit in writing their positions on it.

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Jackson said she understood Stone’s desire to get his side of the story out but said, “This is a criminal proceeding, not a public relations campaign.”

She added that it was only the Stone case that she didn't want the attorneys or Stone to talk about.

"You can talk about foreign relations, immigration or Tom Brady as much as you want to,” she said.

Jackson set the next status hearing for March 14. Stone is set to appear live on Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight” Friday at 8 p.m. ET.

In an indictment unsealed a week ago, Stone is accused of lying to Congress and Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team about his interactions related to WikiLeaks' release of Democratic emails during the 2016 campaign.

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After he was released, Stone vowed during a dramatic press conference outside a federal courthouse in Florida to fight the charges. He later pleaded not guilty.

"I will plead not guilty to these charges," Stone told reporters. "I will defeat them in court. This is a politically-motivated investigation."

Stone, who once worked for former President Nixon and has a tattoo of him on his back, flashed the Nixon V-sign in front of cameras before he spoke.

"There is no circumstance whatsoever under which I will bear false witness against the president, nor will I make up lies to ease the pressure on myself," Stone said.

Since then, Stone has given multiple interviews to news organizations and has held a press conference in Washington about the case, arguing his prosecution is "politically motivated.”

Stone served as an adviser to Trump for years before he ran for president. He left Trump’s campaign in August 2015, but maintained regular contact with and publicly supported the Trump campaign through the 2016 election.

Mueller’s investigation, which was initially ordered to look into the 2016 election, has gone on for more than a year and half. It has expanded to probe financial crimes of Trump associates before the election, conversations Trump’s national security adviser had with the Russians during the transition and whether Trump obstructed justice with his comments and actions related to the probe.