Former Trump campaign aide George PapadopoulosGeorge Demetrios PapadopoulosTrump supporters show up to DC for election protest Trump pardons draw criticism for benefiting political allies Klobuchar: Trump 'trying to burn this country down on his way out' MORE was released from a federal prison in Wisconsin on Friday morning after serving 12 days for lying to investigators about his contacts with Russia-linked officials during the 2016 campaign.
He will now have 12 months of supervised release and will have to serve more than 200 hours of community service as well as pay a $9,500 fine.
"Glad to have been released today, I am extremely grateful to patriots who supported me," Papadopoulos tweeted Friday evening while sharing his plans to release a book.
Papadopoulos pleaded guilty in October 2017 to lying to FBI agents about his contacts with Russia-linked individuals he was seeking to broker a meeting with for the Trump campaign.
He was handed down his sentence in September and was one of the first Trump campaign officials to be sentenced as part of special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerSenate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel MORE's probe into Russia's election interference.
“While I wasn’t in prison for that long, it’s still not a place anybody wants to spend even one minute in let alone 12 or 14 days, whatever I was in there,” Papadopoulos said on Saturday at the Conservative American Priority Conference in Washington, D.C.
“You're away from family, you're away from friends, you're away from the world and you're living in an underworld," he added. "You know, and I never thought my life that it would've happened to me.”
Papadopoulos has been an outspoken critic of the Mueller probe since his plea deal was struck and claimed that he was improperly targeted by the Obama administration and other western intelligence agencies that wanted to entrap him and others tied to the Trump campaign to embarrass the president.
“I NEVER flipped against the president. What I did do, however, is expose the corruption of this ‘investigation’ for the world to see. The legacy is what matters now, how history remembers these days. Silence during these critical days was never an option. All must be exposed,” he tweeted last month.
I NEVER flipped against the president. What I did do, however, is expose the corruption of this “investigation” for the world to see. The legacy is what matters now, how history remembers these days. Silence during these critical days was never an option. All must be exposed.— George Papadopoulos (@GeorgePapa19) November 21, 2018
It was Papadopoulos’s comments to a top Australian diplomat during the 2016 race that the Russians had dirt on Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonClinton lawyer's indictment reveals 'bag of tricks' Attorney charged in Durham investigation pleads not guilty Attorney indicted on charge of lying to FBI as part of Durham investigation MORE’s campaign that triggered the Justice Department’s investigation into the Trump campaign.
Papadopoulos had claimed that he got the information from Joseph Mifsud, a Kremlin-linked professor who Papadopoulos says, without evidence, is actually a British intelligence officer.
“Still can’t believe the day I am going to a federal prison camp, mainstream media says am going for my Russia contacts. I have never met a single Russian official in my life. I have, however, met many western intel sources—Joseph Mifsud—who people still call 'Russian.' Facts. USA,” he tweeted in November.
Still can’t believe the day I am going to a federal prison camp, mainstream media says am going for my Russia contacts. I have never met a single Russian official in my life. I have, however, met many western intel sources—Joseph Mifsud—who people still call “Russian.” Facts. USA— George Papadopoulos (@GeorgePapa19) November 26, 2018
Updated: Dec. 9 at 10:27 a.m.