In a 2–1 decision on Wednesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that the federal judge presiding over the case against Michael Flynn must grant a Justice Department request to dismiss the matter, Breitbart reported.
Judge Emmet Sullivan has pushed back against demands to drop the case against President Donald Trump’s former National Security adviser.
The appeals court ruling this week also prohibits Sullivan from hearing amicus briefs about why the case should not be dropped. He had previously appointed retired Judge John Gleeson to make arguments on behalf of that position, as USA Today reported last month.
“Good for America”
While Flynn pleaded guilty to charges that he lied to FBI agents in 2017, he later withdrew that plea and requested a new trial. Information later surfaced that led to speculation about whether federal investigators coerced him into lying, according to NPR.
Declassified documents revealed discussions between FBI officials that prompted allegations that they did not have a sufficient reason to investigate Flynn but decided to question him anyway in an attempt at entrapment.
Former FBI agent Peter Strzok reportedly wrote memos declaring that calls between Flynn and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak appeared to be legitimate, according to Fox News. Strzok reportedly urged continuation of the probe, despite the lack of investigatory basis for it to proceed, as Fox also reported.
The Justice Department has since decided to drop charges in the case, but Sullivan has thus far declined to do so. In light of Wednesday’s decision, however, it remains to be seen whether the judge will continue to maintain his stance.
“Depends on what they’re afraid of”
Flynn broke his silence with an appearance on Rush Limbaugh’s radio show on Wednesday, calling the appeals court decision “good for America” and a step toward restoring faith in the justice system.
Limbaugh said he was “stunned” to receive the call and get the opportunity to interview Flynn about the development in his case.
While he expressed relief over the appeals court ruling, the host noted that Sullivan had not yet officially signed an order dismissing the case.
“It depends on what they’re afraid of with General Flynn,” Limbaugh said, discussing whether the judge would continue dragging out the process. “Some people are gonna be urging him to carry this on as long as he can through the election, for whatever reason.”
If there is an ulterior motive in keeping the Flynn investigation open, this week’s court ruling just made it substantially more difficult to defend.