“I CAN’T EXPLAIN IT”
by Sharon Rondeau
(May 14, 2020) — On Thursday night’s “Hannity,” the lead attorney for Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn (Ret), Sidney Powell, appeared bewildered at last week’s decision by U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan not to dismiss the case as the Justice Department requested.
Instead, Sullivan issued an order indicating his intent to engage an outside party “to present arguments in opposition to the government’s motion to dismiss.”
During a recent conference call with members of the “Obama Alumni Association,” the man known as Barack Hussein Obama stated falsely that Flynn was accused of perjury. The recording of Obama’s call was provided to Yahoo! News, with the left-leaning Michael Isikoff reporting the story.
Flynn had been Obama’s director of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), over which they clashed. In 2014, Flynn was fired by Obama’s Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper.
As part of his agenda going forward, Sullivan invited the submission of amicus curiae briefs to “address whether the Court should issue an Order to Show Cause why Mr. Flynn should not be held in criminal contempt for perjury pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 401, Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 42, the Court’s inherent authority, and any other applicable statutes, rules, or controlling law.”
On December 1, 2017, Flynn pleaded “guilty” to a charge of lying to two FBI agents during their ad-hoc visit to the West Wing on his fourth full day as Trump’s national security adviser. In January, under Powell’s counsel, Flynn filed a motion to withdraw the plea in the wake of what Powell said was “egregious government misconduct” and the withholding by prosecutors of Brady, or exculpatory, material.
When Hannity posited that “both sides want to dismiss, and now he’s bringing in somebody with a clear bias to decide for him,” Powell, a former federal prosecutor, responded that in her book, “Licensed to Lie,” she framed Sullivan as her “judicial hero.” That judgment stemmed from Sullivan’s dismissal of a criminal charge against the late former U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK) for what Sullivan said was “mishandling and misconduct” on the part of the government.
Obama’s attorney general, Eric Holder, continued Stevens’s prosecution begun during the second George W. Bush administration. An article at the “DC Bar” website titled, “A Cautionary Tale: The Ted Stevens Prosecution,” explains:
On April 7, 2009, Judge Emmet G. Sullivan of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia unleashed his fury before a packed courtroom. For 14 minutes, he scolded. He chastised. He fumed. “In nearly 25 years on the bench,” he said, “I’ve never seen anything approaching the mishandling and misconduct that I’ve seen in this case.”
It was the culmination of a disastrous prosecution: the public corruption case against former U.S. Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK).
Stevens was convicted in October 2008 of violating federal ethics laws by failing to report thousands of dollars in gifts he received from friends. But a team of prosecutors from the U.S. Department of Justice is accused of failing to hand over key exculpatory evidence and knowingly presenting false evidence to the jury.
The Stevens case is a cautionary tale. It reminds lawyers and nonlawyers alike of the power and failures of our legal system and those who have sworn to uphold the rule of law. At the center of the story are real people: an old and powerful politician, a crack defense team, determined prosecutors, and their supervisors…
It is a common occurrence, especially in criminal cases: Lawyers who are battling it out in court push for every procedural advantage; they overstep their bounds and must be reined back in by the judge. There often are accusations that one side or the other is failing to produce evidence. But in the Stevens case, transcripts of multiple hearings show Judge Sullivan continuously reprimanding prosecutors for withholding discovery evidence.
On Monday, Powell filed a “Opposition to and Motion to Deny Notice of Intent to File Motion for Leave to File Amicus Brief” which begins:
On May 11, 2020,a group referring to itself as “Watergate Prosecutors” submitted to the Court by email a Notice of Intent to File Motion for Leave to File Brief as Amicus Curiae.1 However, this Court has consistently—on twenty-four (24) previous occasions—summarily refused to permit any third party to inject themselves or their views into this case. Exhibit A. The proposed amicus brief has no place in this Court. No rule allows the filing, and the self-proclaimed collection of “Watergate Prosecutors” has no cognizable special interest. Separation of powers forecloses their appearance here. Only the Department of Justice and the defense can be heard. Accordingly, the Watergate Prosecutors’ attempted filing itself should not be registered on the docket, and any attempt by the group or any individual to make a filing in this case must be denied—as all others have been.
When Hannity asked Powell why Sullivan “didn’t understand” why Flynn accepted the “guilty” plea, purportedly because prosecutors threatened Flynn’s son with prosecution, Powell responded, “I don’t know, Sean; I am mystified by the entire thing. It’s just — it’s not even like the Judge Sullivan I knew in the Stevens case at all. I can’t explain it.”