The DC circuit court of appeals has oral arguments scheduled for this coming Friday as the DOJ and Flynn defense both request intervention. In the interim the underlying case continues in Judge Emett Sullivan’s court. Part of that underlying case activity was a request by Sullivan for an Amicus briefing by court appointed lawyer John Gleeson.
John Gleeson is essentially filling an assignment by the judge to assume the role of prosecutor and inform the court through an amicus briefing. That brief was filed today [pdf available here and below]. Within the brief, and counter to the position of the DOJ with new information, Gleeson claims the predicate for the investigation of Flynn was valid and sets out to launch his argument from that foundation.
In essence Gleeson is defending the origin of Spygate/Obamagate and all the downstream consequences from that originating decision; one of those origination issues was an investigation of Michael Flynn; and one downstream consequence was an interview of Flynn under the guise of the dubious originating investigation authority.
Assuming the role of “Spygate” defender is an interesting effort by John Gleeson; considering that Gleeson should have little knowledge about new discoveries into the DOJ and FBI predication activity in 2016. The discoveries by USAO John Durham (Spygate in total) and USAO Jeff Jensen (Flynn case specific) should be unknown to Gleeson as he attempts to frame his argument.
When you read the brief, it does make you wonder if Gleeson might be attempting to frame the current Flynn argument from the perspective of justifying the total Spygate operation. This approach would be of benefit to the corrupt DOJ and FBI small group who are viewed to have purposefully weaponized their agencies for political intents. From that perspective Gleeson (Lawfare) would be using his Amicus role to build the small group defense.
By taking this approach Gleeson opens himself up to the collapse of his position, right out of the gate, if the valid predicate he is assuming does not exist. Of course this assumes the DOJ might be willing to highlight the specifics on why the Gleeson predicate is invalid, in the counter to his Amicus brief.
The predicate is critical. The DOJ has dropped the case specifically by saying the predicate to investigate General Michael Flynn was invalid; ergo all consequences from that corrupt investigation, including the questioning of Flynn on January 24, 2017, are materially and fundamentally flawed. Gleeson must maintain the investigative predicate if he is to argue a false statement within the Flynn interview was a material lie. This is a tenuous approach if Gleeson doesn’t know the most recent evidence that may have destroyed the predicate.
From that position John Gleeson then argues that Michael Flynn perjured himself in front of the court by admitting to a lie he now says did not take place. Of course Gleeson omits any aspects to the plea being coerced under duress as the special counsel threatened his family (Flynn Jr.) with arrest if he didn’t take the plea.
Instead Gleeson’s argument is that Flynn’s guilty plea now represents a violation of law, perjury, because the defendant is now saying his guilt admission was false testimony.
Gleeson, argues Flynn should be punished at sentencing for lying about crime he was coerced to plead guilty to, and which he did not commit. Madness.
It’s an interesting read and there are likely several people who held interest in the careful way John Gleeson constructed his argument. However, it may all be a moot point depending on the outcome of the DOJ DC circuit appeal, and the possibility the superior court may just tell Judge Sullivan to stop the games and accept the withdrawal.