US AG criticized for move to drop case against ex-NSA

14 Mai, 2020, 12:29 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Attorney General William Barr arrives with President Donald J. Trump to speak with members of the coronavirus task force during a briefing in response to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on Wed

One of the tweets Trump shared was one tweeted by Fox News host Shannon Bream in which she said, "If you're still catching your breath from today, I'm told next week will involve "a bombshell". It helped, it upheld the standards of the Department of Justice, and it undid what was an injustice".

A spokeswoman for the attorney general did not immediately respond to a request for comment from CNBC.

"The news over the last 24 hours I think has been somewhat downplayed, about the Justice Department dropping charges against Michael Flynn", the former president said.

Flynn admitted in 2017 to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about talking to the Russian ambassador to Washington, Sergey Kislyak, during the investigation into claims of Russian interference in the 2016 election.

He had reaffirmed his guilt at a sentencing hearing a year later that was aborted to give him more time to cooperate with then-special counsel Robert Mueller.

The big picture: The Flynn filing - signed by acting U.S. Attorney for D.C. Timothy Shea, a close confidante of Attorney General Barr - notes that the FBI had meant to close its counterintelligence investigation of Flynn but extended it upon learning about his conversations with then-Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

Federal prosecutors pursued charges against Flynn by claiming he broke the Logan Act, an archaic, seldom-used law meant to punish those who misrepresent the USA government to foreign countries.

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Kravis' op-ed also came three months after he resigned from the Justice Department, where he had worked for a decade. "I accept full responsibility for my actions".

Amid growing public calls by outside watchdogs and other lawmakers for the resignation or possible impeachment of U.S. Attorney General William Barr, members of the House Judiciary Committee late Friday afternoon called on Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz to open an official probe into the politicization of the DOJ under Barr's leadership.

'Your work of investigating and prosecuting criminal cases is hard, and it becomes even harder when witnesses and jurors start to believe that the Justice Department's handling of these cases is infected by politics, ' he said.

Kravis noted that this wasn't fair because those prosecutors are banned from talking about them in the media. Our democracy depends on a Department of Justice that acts as an independent arbiter of equal justice, not as an arm of the president's political apparatus. "They deserve a Department that is guided by the facts and the law, and not by the President's political interests". "When the department takes steps that it would never take in any other case to protect an ally of the president, it betrays this principle".

The charging document in Flynn's case reveals that on or around December 29, 2016, the former National Security Advisor asked Kislyak to "refrain from escalating the situation in response to sanctions that the United States had imposed on Russian Federation that same day" and Kislyak told Flynn that Russian Federation "had chosen to moderate its response to those sanctions as a result of his request". The attorney general, whom I disagree with on many issues, this time did the unthinkable.

Flynn can also still be sentenced by Judge Sullivan and wait for Trump to pardon him, as was expected before Barr moved to drop the case the DOJ already won.



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