Coons shares statute on lying to Congress after Trump Jr. testimony

Senate Judiciary Committee member Sen. Chris CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsMcConnell: 'I don't hear much pressure' to pass bill protecting Mueller from Trump Bipartisan lawmakers can rebuild trust by passing infusion therapy bill Democrats double down on calls for Congress to protect Mueller MORE (D-Del.) emailed the U.S. statute outlining punishments for lying or withholding information from Congress on Thursday just hours after Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpDems win from coast to coast Falwell after Gillespie loss: 'DC should annex' Northern Virginia Dems see gains in Virginia's House of Delegates MORE Jr. testified before the committee.

"Below is a statue to keep in mind in regards to Donald Trump Jr.'s testimony today," Coons wrote in the email before sharing the rules of the statute.

"It is important to remember that anyone who testifies in front of a Senate committee is under the restrictions of the False Statements statute that says material false statements to Congress are criminal and punishable with fines or imprisonment or both," Coons said in a statement attached to the forwarded memo.

In a closed-door five-hour session with the committee, President Trump's son answered questions on his June 2016 meeting with a Russian lawyer who promised information on Trump's Democratic opponent Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonGOP rushes to cut ties to Moore Papadopoulos was in regular contact with Stephen Miller, helped edit Trump speech: report Bannon jokes Clinton got her ‘ass kicked’ in 2016 election MORE.

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Trump Jr. said in the session, which was not held under oath, that he was looking to assess Clinton's "fitness" for office. The testimony was part of the committee's ongoing investigation into Russian meddling in the election. 

The statute prohibits the falsifying or covering up of any material fact to Congress, and pertains to "procurement of property or services." 

Trump Jr. has become a key figure in the various Russia probes since the meeting was first reported. He has denied that he received any damaging information about Clinton after taking the meeting.