Retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn’s legal team called for an immediate end to the Department of Justice’s case against him after Judge Emmitt Sullivan ignored a DOJ request to dismiss the charges.
Sullivan tabled a motion by the DOJ to dismiss the case against Flynn filed after a review of case materials revealed evidence that the FBI set a perjury trap for Flynn. Instead, Sullivan invited interested parties on Tuesday to file friend-of-the-court briefs, called “amicus” briefs, to weigh in on the case.
“This travesty of justice has already consumed three or more years of an innocent man’s life — and that of his entire family. No further delay should be tolerated or any further expense caused to him and his defense,” Flynn attorney Sydney Powell wrote in a court filing criticizing Sullivan’s decision. “This Court should enter the order proposed by the government immediately.”
Powell noted that “this Court has consistently — on twenty-four (24) previous occasions — summarily refused to permit any third party to inject themselves or their views into this case.”
Sullivan’s directive comes after several members of the Obama administration, which first initiated the investigation into Flynn, complained that the DOJ motion to dismiss the case undermined the rule of law.
“The fact that there is no precedent that anybody can find for someone who has been charged with perjury just getting off scot-free, that’s the kind of stuff where you begin to get worried that basic — not just institutional norms — but our basic understanding of rule of law is at risk,” Former President Barack Obama said in a Friday phone call with supporters.
Former Attorney General Eric Holder said the motion is an effort to “delegitimize” institutions such as the FBI and DOJ.
Justice Department prosecutors, at the direction of Attorney General William Barr, filed a motion to have the case against Flynn dismissed with prejudice after newly uncovered FBI documents revealed that prosecutors violated the Brady rule against withholding evidence favorable to Flynn’s defense. Barr directed prosecutors to drop the case on the recommendation of U.S. district attorney Jeffrey Jensen, who Barr assigned to review the case in February.
The DOJ was not able to toss the charges against Flynn because he pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in December 2017. On Jan. 14, Flynn requested to withdraw his guilty plea “because of the government’s bad faith, vindictiveness, and breach of the plea agreement.”
Barr explained his decision to drop the case against Flynn in a May 7 interview with CBS News.
“It’s on the question of materiality that we feel really that a crime cannot be established here because there was not, in our view, a legitimate investigation going on,” Barr said. “They did not have a basis for a counterintelligence investigation against Flynn at that stage, based on a perfectly legitimate and appropriate call he made as a member of the transition.”
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