This is juicy. The federal judge handling the case of former Trump national security adviser Mike Flynn is weighing whether Flynn should face criminal contempt or perjury charges for withdrawing two separate guilty pleas he made under oath.
In an order Wednesday, Judge Emmet Sullivan appointed retired federal judge John Gleeson to present arguments against the Justice Department’s motion to dismiss Flynn’s case. Sullivan further ordered Gleeson to explore why Flynn “should not be held in criminal contempt for perjury.”
Flynn made multiple conflicting statements in sworn testimony before the court, and not all of them can be true, as Marcy Wheeler points out. In fact, during a pretty unforgettable hearing in late 2018, Sullivan made certain to document the fact that Flynn lied to the FBI and knew it was unlawful when he did it. “I was aware,” Flynn responded. Sullivan then gave Flynn several opportunities to withdraw his guilty plea at the time. Flynn declined.
“Do you understand that by maintaining your guilty plea and continuing with sentencing, you will give up your right forever to challenge the circumstances under which you were interviewed?” Sullivan asked.
“Yes, your honor,” Flynn responded.
A little over a year after that hearing, Flynn’s new legal team sought to withdraw his guilty plea.
But perhaps the most memorable part of that hearing was Sullivan’s assessment of Flynn’s conduct.
“Arguably, you sold your country out,” Sullivan said. Flynn later jumped at the chance to postpone his sentencing that day in order to theoretically provide further proof of his value as an informant for federal prosecutors. Ultimately, Flynn disavowed his plea, and then-Attorney General Bill Barr manufactured a reason to dismiss the charges against him.
Wonder what Judge Sullivan thinks of Attorney General Barr right now.
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