Politics Dismiss the case of Michael Flynn

16:21  29 september  2020
16:21  29 september  2020 Source:   thehill.com

FBI analysts thought case against Michael Flynn was a 'nightmare'

  FBI analysts thought case against Michael Flynn was a 'nightmare' FBI analysts with knowledge of the probe into former national security adviser Michael Flynn (left) were worried about the agency's conduct. Ex-FBI chief Jim Comey is seen right.According to court filings from Flynn's lawyers, one FBI employee said the case against the former general was a 'nightmare.

Appeals court orders judge to dismiss Michael Flynn case . Flynn 's case has become a touchstone for President Donald Trump and his supporters in their criticism of the FBI's Russia investigation and special counsel Robert Mueller's criminal prosecution of several Trump campaign associates.

Why justice for Michael Flynn demands a dismissal of the case against him; the #MeToo challenge for Joe Biden's VP; the Worse, while pressuring Flynn to plead guilty, prosecutors didn’t inform him of exonerating evidence; instead, they drained Flynn financially and threatened to charge his son.

When Michael Flynn walks into court today for his final sentencing hearing, a lifetime of respected national service will hang in the balance on what is said and what occurs. I am not speaking of Flynn but of District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan. There is no real question about the dismissal of Flynn's charge of lying to federal investigators. The only question is whether, shortly before a presidential election, Sullivan will use the hearing as a forum for injudicious commentary.

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Justice Department drops criminal case against Michael Flynn . The judge overseeing Flynn 's criminal case opened the door on Tuesday for people outside of the Justice Department and the former national security adviser's legal team to comment on the Trump administration's effort to dismiss the

Michael T. Flynn , President Trump’s former national security adviser, twice pleaded guilty to lying to the F.B.I.Credit Brendan Smialowski/Agence But the full appeals court has the option of reviewing the matter, and Judge Sullivan did not immediately dismiss the case in response to the ruling.

a man wearing a suit and tie: Dismiss the case of Michael Flynn © Aaron Schwartz Dismiss the case of Michael Flynn

I have practiced law for years before Sullivan and publicly praised him for his demeanor and record as a federal judge. He has served with distinction since 1994 in high profile cases, ranging from Guantanamo Bay detainees to the flawed prosecution of Senator Ted Stevens and to the emails of Hillary Clinton.

Then came the case of Flynn, charged with a single count of lying to federal investigators. Such a charge ordinarily would result in a short sentencing hearing. Flynn fought the charge but, after exhausting his assets and facing a threat by prosecutors to target his son, he agreed to plead to one count. Even an uncooperative witness like lawyer Alex Van Der Zwaan received only 30 days in prison on a similar charge related to special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation; another - who, like Flynn, fell out of Mueller's favor - received 14 days in prison.

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The Justice Department is dropping the criminal case against President Donald Trump's first national security adviser, Michael Flynn , whose lies about his contacts with Russia prompted Trump to fire him three years ago and special counsel Robert Mueller to flip him to cooperate in the Russia investigation.

A federal appeals court on Wednesday ordered Judge Emmet Sullivan to dismiss the case against former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn .

Yet this is the third attempted sentencing for Flynn. What should have been a perfunctory hearing two years ago was derailed by Sullivan himself. Flynn and the prosecutors thought they would have a simple hearing and a likely sentence without jail time. After all, this was just one count, and Flynn pleaded guilty, then met with Mueller about 20 times as a cooperative witness. Moreover, we now know federal investigators at the time did not believe Flynn intentionally lied to them. Yet when Flynn went to court, he was given a tongue-lashing rather than a sentence.

Using the courtroom flag as a prop, Sullivan falsely accused Flynn of being "an unregistered agent of a foreign country while serving as the national security adviser to the president of the United States. Arguably, that undermines everything this flag over here stands for. Arguably, you sold your country out." He even suggested Flynn should have been charged with treason, then suggested he might ignore any recommendations and send Flynn to jail: "I cannot assure you that if you proceed today, you will not receive a sentence of incarceration. ... I'm not hiding my disgust, my disdain."

U.S. judge to weigh whether to drop criminal case against ex-Trump adviser Flynn

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Michael Flynn (Ret.). Flynn won his request for a writ of mandamus ordering Judge Emmet Sullivan to grant the DOJ’s motion last month. [T]his is plainly not the rare case where further judicial inquiry is warranted. To begin with, Flynn agrees with the government’s motion to dismiss , and there has been

MORE: DOJ moves to dismiss case against former Trump adviser Michael Flynn . MORE: Justice Department reviewing handling of Michael Flynn case : Source. Rao also notes the recent evidence surfaced by the Justice Department's separate review of the case should give it the freedom to revisit

Sullivan later apologized for some of his comments but the bizarre hearing led to a critical delay. During that time, new evidence emerged that cast further doubt on the Flynn investigation, including material showing that FBI agents wanted to close the case as early as December 2016 for lack of evidence. The investigation was kept open at the insistence of now fired FBI special agent Peter Strzok, who showed intense animus for President Trump.

We also learned that, according to recently disclosed notes, former FBI director James Comey admitted to President Obama that Flynn's conversations with Russians as the incoming national security adviser appeared "legit." These and other troubling revelations correctly led the Justice Department to seek dismissal of the charge. There is an ongoing investigation and various experts (including myself) have long argued that the Flynn investigation and charge were deeply flawed.

The law on this is clear and overwhelming: Sullivan should have dismissed the charge five months ago. Instead, he again took a highly controversial position. He not only suggested he might charge Flynn himself - with criminal conduct for contesting his guilty plea - but he hired a former judge to argue against any dismissal. Enlisting such a third party to argue for prosecution is highly unusual and deeply troubling. Sullivan seemed to be claiming the right to mete out his own version of justice with a bench-ordered criminal charge and an outsider playing the role of quasi-prosecutor.

Judge Sullivan Appears Highly Skeptical of Michael Flynn and DOJ During Long-Awaited Hearing

  Judge Sullivan Appears Highly Skeptical of Michael Flynn and DOJ During Long-Awaited Hearing Technical difficulties plagued a digital hearing over the fate of onetime National Security Advisor and retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn on Tuesday--but one thing was constant through the first hour of the quickly-recessed hearing: the court's iciness toward the defendant and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). © Provided by Law & Crime U.S. District Judge for the D.C. District Court Emmet G. Sullivan spent the better part of the first hour summarizing the current state of play in the years-long Flynn saga.

BREAKING: U.S. Appeals Court Dismisses Case Against Michael Flynn .

The case involves the Trump Justice Department’s decision to drop charges against a former Trump aideThe case arises out of the Justice Department’s abrupt decision to abandon its successful prosecution of Michael Flynn , a former general who briefly served as President’s Trump’s national

Sullivan selected John Gleeson, who has spoken publicly about the Flynn case and is a critic of President Trump. Ironically Gleeson was reversed as a judge for usurping the position of prosecutors in the case of United States versus HSBC Bank, in which the Second Circuit hammered him for exaggerating his role in a way that "would be to turn the presumption of regularity on its head."

Gleeson filed a brief calling for the court to reject the motion and, bizarrely, order the jailing of someone who prosecutors maintained was not appropriately charged in the first place. His brief was filled with overwrought rhetoric and attacks on the "trumped-up accusation of government misconduct." The brief drew a sharp rebuke from an appellate panel for relying "on news stories, tweets, and other facts outside the record to contrast the government's grounds for dismissal here with its rationales for prosecution in other cases." It held that time was up for Sullivan because "we need not guess if this irregular and searching scrutiny will continue; it already has."

After that opinion, many of us predicted the full appellate court would reverse, not because of any disagreement on the underlying law but because Sullivan should be given a chance to do the right thing. Sullivan had not finally ruled and, while noting the clear law on this question, the panel should not have taken that final decision away from him. There remains no question as to the outcome of this case: Sullivan either will dismiss this charge or be reversed by the same court that sent it back to him for a final ruling.

At court hearing, Flynn lawyers and DOJ continue push to get case thrown out

  At court hearing, Flynn lawyers and DOJ continue push to get case thrown out Former national security adviser Michael Flynn's lawyer said in a court hearing Tuesday that she met with Trump in recent weeks to discuss Flynn's criminal case. The Justice Department's surprise reversal and motion to drop the case this past May was not immediately accepted by D.C. District Judge Emmet Sullivan, who instead moved to appoint an outside former federal judge tasked with arguing against the DOJ -- as well as considering whether Flynn committed perjury in contradicting his previous guilty plea.

Nevertheless, as if determined to prove the panel right, Gleeson responded to the reversal with another brief bordering on a rant, declaring the government's position is proof of "a corrupt and politically motivated favor unworthy of our justice system." He still is arguing against overwhelming case law and advocating certain reversal for Sullivan by convicting a person of a crime who the government maintains was improperly charged.

That's why Sullivan's - not Flynn's - reputation is at stake in this hearing. He can follow the law dispassionately and dismiss this charge without gratuitous commentary. Or he can use the hearing to lash out at the administration and the defendant just before a presidential election.

Various experts and other judges already have criticized the handling of this case. Others were thrilled with Sullivan's past comments from the bench. Those who reversed the panel did not do so in approval of handling of the case or prior orders. Indeed, their opinion was a model of objective, dispassionate analysis, citing the need for a final decision from Sullivan regardless of the controversies.

As someone who has long respected Sullivan, I hope he brings an end to this two-year spasmodic, cathartic record. The law is clear, and it is time for a ruling that was never in serious doubt. It is time to dismiss the criminal case against Flynn.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can find his updates online @JonathanTurley.

Michael Flynn's attorney asked Trump to hold off on pardon .
Judge Emmet Sullivan is reviewing the Justice Department's move to dismiss charges against President Trump's former national security adviser.Though she was reticent about discussing her communications with the White House during a federal court hearing, Sydney Powell admitted that she had spoken with President Trump and his legal adviser recently about the status of the former national security adviser's legal troubles.

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