Michael Flynn, who in 2016 was targeted by an FBI investigation and subsequently pleaded guilty to lying to investigators, has been exonerated, following a Department of Justice (DOJ) decision to abandon the former general’s prosecution. Flynn was reportedly coerced into pleading guilty by prosecutors working for former special counsel Robert Mueller. According to recently released documents, Mueller’s people told Flynn that they would not pursue his son for a possible Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) violation if the then-national security advisor pleaded guilty to lying to FBI agents.
The DOJ motion to dismiss the criminal information against Flynn was filed May 7 with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The judge, Emmet Sullivan, must sign off on the motion to formally end the legal proceedings against Flynn, whose sentencing hearing had in February been indefinitely postponed.
DOJ Motion Admonishes Comey & the FBI
The Justice Department filing contains a “factual background” section which describes in detail an alarming series of events, during which then-FBI Director James Comey defied directives from the Justice Department. Even as the Trump White House was barely finding its feet, in January of 2017, senior officials of the FBI were scrambling to come up with a justification for continuing to pursue an investigation of Flynn. As the motion details, the Bureau had in late 2016 decided to drop the probe of the general. An FBI document from that time states that the investigation of Flynn had failed to produce “any information on which to predicate further investigative efforts.”
Moreover, the DOJ filing dismisses the justification for prosecuting Flynn on a single count of making false statements. Justice points out that, since the FBI, by its own determination, had no further predication for continuing its investigation of Flynn, the fact that the general had allegedly made a false statement to FBI agents was, essentially, irrelevant:
“The Government is not persuaded that the January 24, 2017 interview [of Flynn] was conducted with a legitimate investigative basis and therefore does not believe Mr. Flynn’s statements were material even if untrue. Moreover, we not [sic] believe that the Government can prove either the relevant false statements or their materiality beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Robert Mueller’s Crooked Prosecutors
News of the Justice Department’s motion became public almost immediately following breaking news that Brandon L. Van Grack, a prosecutor who worked on the Mueller probe into alleged collusion between Russian officials and the 2016 Trump campaign, had withdrawn from the Flynn case. Van Grack was mentioned in a newly-published document as being one of those who suggested to Flynn that he should plead guilty in order to protect his son from prosecution.
No reason has been offered for the prosecutor’s withdrawal, but Van Grack’s credibility took a hit, recently, when a DOJ document dump included exculpatory evidence pertaining to the Flynn investigation that had not been shared with Flynn’s defense team. Van Grack had previously insisted that all such evidence had been handed over.
The Stain of Corruption
It is worth noting that, historically, the DOJ almost never admits that it was wrong – much less publicly disclose wrongdoing on the part of one of its agencies. This alone speaks to the seriousness with which it is now dissecting the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane counterintelligence operation which in 2016 targeted the Trump campaign and eventually was subsumed by the Mueller investigation.
It is not just FBI corruption that is now being exposed, though. Mueller’s team of hand-picked, Democrat-supporting attorneys, who for almost two years hounded the president and anyone associated with his election campaign, is under the spotlight. The assassination of Flynn’s character and reputation – not to mention the devastating financial cost to him personally – is a stain upon Mueller’s supposedly top-tier prosecutors and upon the reputation and integrity of Robert Mueller himself.
By extension, this stain of political corruption spreads through the Democratic Party’s congressional delegation and up through to the highest levels of the administration of former President Barack Obama.
Read more from Graham J. Noble.
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