FLYNN: Don’t Pop Any Corks Just Yet… Judge Just Threw A Wrench Into The Process
The judge who once scolded Flynn for being a 'traitor' did not dismiss the case after DOJ withdrew. He did something else, instead.
He is inviting 'amicus' submissions on a freaking criminal trial.
The defendant has withdrawn his plea, claiming that he was pressured against his will to provide it... offering evidence of prosecutorial malfeasance that violated his rights in the process.
The DOJ has withdrawn their charges, agreeing with the Defendant that there was no lawful predicate upon which this case against General Flynn was built... and worse, that there is documentary evidence of the DOJ's intent to entrap him.
It should be open-and-shut, right?
Nope. Not with the judge that once called the man even DOJ now calls innocent a 'traitor'. He has taken the step of inviting amicus submissions.
D.C. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan issued an order Tuesday indicating he'll soon accept "amicus curiae," or "friend of the court" submissions, in the case of former national security adviser Michael Flynn -- drawing immediate scrutiny and a planned ethics complaint against Sullivan, who had previously refused to hear amicus briefs in the case.
Sullivan's order indicated that an upcoming scheduling order would clarify the parameters of who specifically could submit the amicus briefs, which are submissions by non-parties that claim an interest in the case. Sullivan specifically said he anticipated that "individuals and organizations" will file briefs "for the benefit of the court," as he prepares to rule on the government's motion to dismiss the case.
"Judge Sullivan, who denied leave to file amicus briefs when he knew third parties would have spoken favorably of Flynn, now solicits briefs critical of Flynn," independent journalist Michael Cernovich wrote on Twitter Tuesday evening. "This is a violation of the judicial oath and applicable ethical rules. We will be filing a complaint against Sullivan. ... [He] is acting as a politician, not a judge."
Sullivan had previously held in the Flynn case that "[o]ptions exist for a private citizen to express his views about matters of public interest, but the Court's docket is not an available option."
Will Chamberlain, a lawyer and the editor-in-chief of Human Events, noted that case law in the circuit generally prohibits trial court judges from second-guessing the government's decision not to prosecute a defendant. -- FoxNews
Turley had some interesting observations in a tweet thread.
Interesting development just in the Flynn case. Judge Sullivan just issued an order saying "at the appropriate time, the Court will enter an Order governing the submission of any amicus curiae briefs." That certainly does not suggest quick order granting an unopposed motion...
...The Court is faced with an unopposed motion where the Justice Department no longer believes the case can be ethically prosecuted. Judge Sullivan appears incline to bring in third parties to argue against an unopposed motion where the defendant and prosecutors agree...
...It is hard to imagine the court insisting on sentencing a defendant to jail when prosecutors believe he was unjustly charged. Ironically, Judge Sullivan made this motion easier due to the controversy over his prior sentencing hearing...
...due to the controversy, Flynn opted not to be sentenced by Sullivan at that time. That left him unsentenced, which ironically made this motion easier. Otherwise, Flynn would have faced a more difficult post-conviction motion while on appeal. No amicus can change that record...
Amicus can certainly add more heat but not light. More importantly, it is unlikely to change the outcome. I previously stated that I thought Judge Sullivan would call a hearing. This appears to confirm that he is unlikely to go quietly into the night with a ruling on the papers.
He also linked a story where he argued that the Flynn case should be dismissed in the name of justice.