U.S. District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan, who oversees the case against former President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn, has appointed former judge John Gleeson to counter the Justice Department’s argument that Flynn’s case should be dismissed.
Sullivan wrote that Gleeson will present arguments as an amicus curiae––or “friend of the court”––”in opposition to the government’s Motion to Dismiss” and on “whether the Court should issue an Order to Show Cause why Mr. Flynn should not be held in criminal contempt for perjury.”
Flynn resigned from the White House in disgrace after he provided false information about his communications with the Russian government, particularly after the news of his conversations with Sergey Kislyak, then the Russian ambassador to the United States, became public. He later pleaded guilty to a felony count of “willfully and knowingly” making false statements to the FBI.
You can read the complete text of Judge Sullivan’s order HERE.
Gleeson authored a Washington Post op-ed earlier this week titled “The Flynn Case Isn’t Over Until the Judge Says It’s Over.”
“The department’s motion to dismiss the Flynn case is actually just a request — one that requires “leave of the court” before it is effective. The executive branch has unreviewable authority to decide whether to prosecute a case. But once it secures an indictment, the proceedings necessarily involve the judicial branch. And the law provides that the court — not the executive branch — decides whether an indictment may be dismissed. The responsible exercise of that authority is particularly important here, where a defendant’s plea of guilty has already been accepted. Government motions to dismiss at this stage are virtually unheard of,” he wrote.
He continued: “The department once argued that those conversations confirmed Flynn’s guilt. It now claims those conversations were innocuous. By ordering disclosure of the transcripts, the court can empower the American public to judge for itself — and assess why the department is trying to walk away from this important case.”
Gleeson notes that “Flynn’s guilt has already been adjudicated. So if the court finds dismissal would result in a miscarriage of justice, it can deny the motion, refuse to permit withdrawal of the guilty plea and proceed to sentencing.”
Alan is a writer, editor, and news junkie based in New York.