In the ongoing case involving former top Trump adviser Michael Flynn, John Gleeson — a former federal judge who has been appointed as an outside counsel in the case against the top Trump ally — has insisted in a new court filing that the Justice Department capitulated to a “pressure campaign” from the president when they moved to drop the original charges against Flynn.
Despite the Justice Department’s motion to dismiss the charges, Judge Emmet Sullivan has held onto the case and is apparently seeking to conclusively determine whether dropping the case is actually the appropriate path forward. Besides his appointment of Gleeson, he’s also previously argued against dropping the case outright to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, who are currently allowing the case to continue.
Gleeson insisted that the Justice Department had sought “to dismiss criminal charges on grounds riddled with legal and factual error, then [argued] that the validity of those grounds cannot even be briefed to the Court that accepted the defendant’s guilty plea.” He added:
‘There is clear evidence that the Government’s Motion to Dismiss the case against Defendant Michael T. Flynn rests on pure pretext. There is clear evidence that this motion reflects a corrupt and politically motivated favor unworthy of our justice system.’
Gleeson had an explanation. In his new filing, he added:
‘Based entirely on evidence already in the public view, the only coherent explanation for the Government’s exceedingly irregular motion —as well as its demonstrable pretexts — is that the Justice Department has yielded to a pressure campaign led by the President for his political associate.’
It’s not actually the first time that the federal government has been used to benefit a political ally of the president. Recently, Trump also commuted the prison sentence of his longtime ally Roger Stone, which meant that he did not have to serve any of the sentence handed down after he was found guilty of an obstruction of justice scheme. In the Flynn case, the former top Trump adviser originally pleaded guilty to lying about his communications with a then-Russian Ambassador to the U.S. He subsequently tried to back out of his plea deal prior to the Justice Department’s decision to move to drop the charges. Judge Sullivan has a hearing in the Flynn case scheduled for September 29.