Michael Flynn’s effort to force a judge to immediately dismiss the charges against him has been rejected by the federal appeals court, changing an earlier decision that would have allowed the Department of Justice to drop its case against the former national security adviser.
The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 8-2 against Flynn’s petition for it to step in and force a district judge to grant the Justice Department’s motion to drop charges without holding a hearing on the issue.
According to Thehill.com, The circuit court also denied Flynn’s argument that the judge overseeing his case be forced to recuse himself. The former three-star general’s legal team had argued that Judge Emmet Sullivan acted improperly by appointing outside counsel to argue against the DOJ’s sudden decision to drop its case and by asking the full circuit court to revisit the earlier decision by a three-judge panel.
Flynn’s attorney did not immediately respond when asked for comment.
Unless Flynn’s lawyers appeal to the Supreme Court, Sullivan will be able to move forward with a hearing about the DOJ’s unusual reversal in the case, before deciding whether to allow the Trump administration to withdraw its charges against the president’s former close aide.
Flynn had pleaded guilty in 2017 to lying to the FBI about his conversations with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. and agreed to cooperate with the special counsel’s investigation into Russian interference in 2016 election.
In the past year however, he backed out of the plea agreement, hired a firebrand conservative lawyer and disavowed his guilty plea, moving to fight the charges instead.
The DOJ decided in May to move to drop its case, saying it no longer had faith in the FBI investigation that led to Flynn’s interrogation in early 2017
Michal Flynn Twitter