In the legal fight to take down President Trump, there has been no more shameful example of collateral damage than the case of former national security adviser Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn. But since he got new legal representation --- attorney Sidney Powell, the perfect choice given her past experience with Mueller attack dog Andrew Weissmann --- it’s been clear that this isn’t over for him.
Recall that Flynn was charged with perjury even though his FBI questioners –- one was the infamous Peter Strzok –- didn’t think he had tried to mislead them, and that former FBI Director James Comey publicly bragged about sending FBI agents to the White House to question him without benefit of a lawyer in the very early days of the Trump presidency. (His audience laughed when he told them.) It was an obvious set-up. And from all we can tell, Flynn took the plea not because he had actually lied but because he was financially broken and prosecutors had threatened to go after his family.
Flynn still hasn’t been sentenced, as prosecutors have enlisted him as a “cooperating witness” in a FARA case (Foreign Agents Registration Act) involving his former business partner. But according to investigative reporter Sara Carter, who cites a brief filed by Sidney Powell in the Eastern District of Virginia and unsealed by the judge on Tuesday, that relationship changed after they pressured him to lie under oath. According to the brief, “The prosecutors have been adamant that Mr. Flynn testify that he authorized the filing of the FARA form knowing and intending that it contained false statements. Mr. Flynn cannot give that testimony because it is not true.”
As Carter reports, before he signed off on the paperwork in question, which the head of the National Security Division of the DOJ was making him do, Flynn had one of the top experts in FARA law go over every bit of it to make sure it was truthful and in order. It was his absolute belief when he signed it that it was correct.
But because he wouldn’t say what they wanted –- because saying he had lied WOULD be lying –- they were planning to change his designation from “cooperating witness” to “co-conspirator” in the case against his former partner. Prosecutors are, in effect, suborning perjury when they deal with a witness in this way.
So, after all this time, Flynn is still having to deal with this garbage. Fortunately, Judge Anthony Trenga issued a scathing opinion late in the day Tuesday that rejected the prosecutors’ request. The details are here in Carter’s updated report…
Carter, in an appearance on Tuesday’s HANNITY, made the point that a FARA application is typically simple to fill out, but that Flynn’s FARA was “so extraordinarily complicated” that it was almost (almost?) as if they had deliberately crafted it to make it impossible for him to avoid making a misstatement. Traditionally, the FARA law has been quite casually enforced, but agents started cracking down when it was found to be a way to snare associates of the President.
Oh, and Michael Flynn’s name also turns up on the list of 12 more subpoenas being issued by Jerrold Nadler’s House Judiciary Committee. After all he’s been through, and all the testifying he’s already done, the Democrats want to put him in the hot seat again –- and perhaps yet another perjury trap. It’s just disgraceful, especially when directed at someone who served his country with distinction for decades.
If they really wanted to conduct oversight, they’d be looking into the way this fine man has been treated.