Federal Judge Emmet Sullivan has dropped the criminal case against former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn just days after President Donald Trump granted him a pardon.
As Just the News noted, the D.C. Circuit judge delayed Attorney General William Barr’s request to dismiss the Justice Department case for months instead appointing outside counsel to review the request.
The decision to drop the case ends a legal battle that lasted approximately three years, which began when the Justice Department accused Flynn of conspiring with Russian officials during the time the Trump administration took office in 2017.
Flynn ended up signing a plea agreement under pressure on Dec. 1, 2017, as part of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s now-discredited interference in the 2016 presidential election.
This year, the retired lieutenant general tried to withdraw his guilty plea by assuring that he had not lied, although he was finally forced to keep his statement after a group of prosecutors, led by Mueller, threatened to indict his son.
Flynn was backed by a new team of lawyers led by former U.S. Attorney Sidney Powell, who discovered that the FBI had violated protocol by interviewing Flynn at the White House on the matter.
Justice Department officials concluded that Flynn’s interview with the FBI “unconstrained and unwarranted by the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation of Mr. Flynn ‘and that the interview’ was conducted without any legitimate investigative basis.”
Barr, one of the actors who sought to have the charges against Flynn dropped, said in interviews that he believed that James Comey’s FBI had set up a “Perjury Trap” for Flynn during the interview that led to his plea.
Recently, Sullivan filed an appeal with the federal appeals court to compel the Justice Department to present the evidence with which Barr sought to support the motion to dismiss the case against Flynn.
As the Daily Caller pointed out, in the recent 43-page ruling, Sullivan indicated that he probably would not have approved a Justice Department motion to drop the charges against Flynn if President Trump had not granted him a pardon.
The Daily Caller pointed out that, in relation to the pardon for Flynn, the judge also said that it did not indicate that he was innocent of the charges in his criminal case.
According to a Justice Department statement, the president’s pardon also protects Flynn from “any possible future perjury or contempt charge in connection with General Flynn’s sworn statements and any other possible future charge that this Court or the court-appointed amicus has suggested might somehow keep this criminal case alive over the government’s objection,” as pointed out by BizPac Review.