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D.C. Court of Appeals rejects Michael Flynn's effort to have charges dismissed

The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 8-2 against dropping the charges against Mike Flynn

Updated: August 31, 2020 - 10:07pm

A D.C. federal appeals court Monday rejected former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn's effort to have a judge dismiss the charges against him. The court overturned an earlier decision that would allow the Justice Department to drop its case against the retired Army lieutenant general.

The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals' full court, 8-2 ruling is considered a temporary setback for Flynn and his legal team's efforts to have the case end.

Flynn and his attorneys had asked the court to intervene and force District Judge Emmet Sullivan to grant the Justice Department's motion to drop the charges against Flynn. Instead, a judge will now be allowed to scrutinize the DOJ's request to dismiss the charges.

However, Sullivan's lawyer, Beth Wilkinson, has suggested that the judge has no reason not to dismiss the case after hearing all of the evidence.

In June, a three-judge panel ruled that Sullivan must dismiss the case against Flynn – per the Justice Department request. In May, Sullivan had refused to comply with the request. The judge had also asked John Gleeson, a retired federal judge, to make the argument against the government's request. Flynn's attorneys, accusing Sullivan of bias, asked the appeals court to intervene, which they did. 

Sullivan retained a high-profile trial lawyer to serve as his representation before the appeals court. The three-judge panel ruled, in a vote of 2-1, that Sullivan must drop the case, and that he was wrong to assign a former federal judge to argue against the government. 

Following the June panel ruling, Sullivan requested a rehearing by the full court of appeals