Clinton Appointed Judge Considering New Criminal Charges Against Michael Flynn
Judge Emmet G. Sullivan considers contempt of court charges against ex-Trump advisor
In the latest twist of the spiraling Obamagate scandal, a Bill Clinton-appointed federal judge is now considering new criminal charges against former Trump advisor Michael Flynn.
Judge Emmet G. Sullivan, who earlier this week refused the Justice Department's request to drop the case against Flynn, will consider whether to find the former national security advisor in criminal contempt of court.
After the Department of Justice moved last week to drop its prosecution of Flynn for lying to the FBI, Judge Sullivan tabled a motion by the DOJ to dismiss the case against Flynn.
The motion was filed after evidence emerged that the FBI set a perjury trap for Flynn.
On Tuesday, instead of dropping the case, Sullivan invited interested parties to weigh in on the case by filing "friend-of-the-court" briefs, called "amicus curiae."
On Wednesday, Sullivan issued an order to appoint retired judge John Gleeson, a fellow-Clinton appointee, as amicus curiae to argue against the DOJ’s motion to dismiss the case.
Sullivan also called on Gleeson to advise the court on whether it should begin contempt proceedings.
New Flynn Filing -— Techno Fog (@Techno_Fog) May 13, 2020
Judge Sullivan appoints retired Judge John Gleeson as amicus "to present arguments in opposition to the govt's motion to dismiss"
Sullivan - also orders Gleeson to address whether the Court should hold Flynn in contempt for perjury. pic.twitter.com/hAedW6BrSP
Gleeson was appointed by President Bill Clinton, as was Sullivan.
On Tuesday, Sullivan said he would entertain amicus curiae briefs from outside parties, such as the anti-Trump “Watergate Prosecutors,” advising him about whether to allow the case to be dropped.
According to Breitbart, the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure provide that a judge “may summarily punish a person who commits criminal contempt in its presence if the judge saw or heard the contemptuous conduct and so certifies.”
However, it would be very unusual for a judge to find a defendant in contempt merely for exercising his right to change a prior guilty plea.
In withdrawing its case against Flynn, the DOJ did not say Flynn had not lied, but that his lies were not “material” because Flynn was not actually being investigated by the FBI for any offense at the time he made false statements to FBI agents.
But by December 2018, as Flynn awaited sentencing, more details about the strange circumstances in which the FBI had initially spoken to Flynn began to emerge.
As Breitbart reported, Flynn’s lawyers pointed out “the possibility of entrapment, the fact that the deputy director of the FBI had advised Flynn not to have counsel present when he was interviewed by the FBI, and that the agents who interviewed him later said that he did not appear to have lied.”
Sullivan was not moved, saying:
“I cannot recall any incident in which the court has accepted a plea of guilty from someone who maintained he was not guilty and I don’t intend to start today.”
He asked Flynn whether he wanted to change his guilty plea, and Flynn declined to do so.
The judge then launched a tirade against Flynn, even asking prosecutors whether he should have been tried for treason.
Afterward, the judge was forced to apologize when it was pointed out that he had mistakenly accused Flynn of being an unregistered foreign agent while he was working in the White House.
Flynn ended his foreign contract in November 2016.