By Tank Murdoch
(TNS) The nightmare of being the first deep state casualty of the newly elected and inaugurated Trump administration has dragged on for nearly three years for retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn.
But a new set of lawyers Flynn has hired in a last push to put an end to the Robert Mueller-induced odyssey has taken aim at his first legal team in a bid to get his guilty plea tossed out by a federal judge.
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As reported by POLITICO, Flynn’s new lawyers have accused his old legal team of having a conflict of interest so significant that it merits allowing President Trump’s first national security adviser to withdraw a guilty plea for lying to FBI agents made more than two years ago.
The news site noted further:
Flynnâ€™s current squad of attorneys contend that Flynnâ€™s original legal counsel with the prominent Washington law firm Covington & Burling was too enmeshed in the early stages of Flynnâ€™s legal troubles to give him detached advice about what to do once prosecutors from special counsel Robert Muellerâ€™s office began threatening to prosecute the retired Army lieutenant general.
Flynnâ€™s new lawyers also contend that the old ones failed to capitalize on damaging disclosures about the probe that ensnared Flynn, such as the texts an FBI agent who conducted a key interview of Flynn sent disparaging candidate Donald Trump during the 2016 election.
â€œMr. Flynnâ€™s guilty plea (and later failure to withdraw it) was the result of the ineffective assistance of counsel provided by his former lawyers, who were in the grip of intractable conflicts of interest, and severely prejudiced him,â€ Flynnâ€™s current lead counsel Sidney Powell and her colleagues wrote inÂ the 49-page motionÂ filed Wednesday afternoon.
â€œThat pernicious conflict infected and prejudiced his defense until he retained new counsel in 2019,” she continued.
Currently, U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan is considering whether to allow Flynn to withdraw his plea. At present, he is still scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 27 in Washington, but his new legal team has asked the judge to defer the sentencing and instead hold what could turn out to be a very contentious evidentiary hearing that examined Flynn’s allegations of misconduct against Mueller’s team of Democrat-donating lawyers, the FBI, and the three-star general’s former legal team.
Federal prosecutors have swatted away the allegations of conflict of interest. They say that they raised the issue with Flynnâ€™s attorneys at the time and he and his lawyers agreed to waive it, according to POLITICO.
The news site added that Flynn’s legal team made an additional filing:
Flynnâ€™s defense team also filed a separate motion Wednesday arguing that the case against him should be dismissed outright because the Justice Department and FBI essentially entrapped the former Defense Intelligence Agency chief into making false statements during an FBI interview at the White House in January 2017 and in filings with Justiceâ€™s Foreign Agent Registration Act office about his work for Turkish interests.
â€œEverything about this prosecution has violated long-standing standards and policy for the FBI and the DOJ,â€ Powell wrote in the new motion.
She wants to capitalize on a Justice Department inspector general report released last month that found serious shortcomings in the FBIâ€™s handling of the “Spygate” investigation, formally known as “Crossfire Hurricane,” into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.
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Officially, the report from Inspector General Michael Horowitz did not find any political bias, but a pair of Republican senators â€” Finance Committee chair Chuck Grassley (Iowa) and Homeland Security chair Ron Johnson (Wis.) â€” now want Attorney General William Barr to declassify four footnotes in Horowitzâ€™s report they are are â€˜misleadingâ€™ to the public.
â€œOnly the dismissal of this prosecution in its entirety would begin to get the attention of the government, the FBI, and the DOJ needed to impress upon them the â€˜reprehensible nature of its acts and omissions,â€™â€ Flynnâ€™s current lawyers added in the second motion.
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