Harvard Law School professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz hopes federal Judge Emmet Sullivan has the courage to throw out former White House National Security Advisor Michael Flynn’s guilty plea because of the FBI’s the conduct in the matter.
Dershowitz further contended that President Donald Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani is wise to advise Trump not to sit down with special counsel Robert Mueller, given how Flynn was handled.
Flynn, who has pleaded guilty to one count of making false statements to federal investigators, is due to be sentenced in Washington on Tuesday.
Dershowitz told Fox News on Monday, “I hope that the judge understands, when he has the case tomorrow, Flynn did not commit a crime by lying because the lie has to be material to the investigation.”
“And if the FBI already knew the answer to the question, and only asked him the question in order to give him the opportunity to lie, his answer, even if false, was not material to the investigation,” the legal scholar added.
Flynn reportedly was not truthful during an informal sit down he had with FBI agents days after President Donald Trump took office, about conversations he had during the presidential transition period with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
In a Monday commentary piece for The Hill, Dershowitz further explained, “The FBI knew the truth. They had recordings of the conversations. Then why did they ask him whether he had those conversations? Obviously, not to learn whether he had them but, rather, to give him the opportunity to lie under oath so that they could squeeze him to provide incriminating information against President Trump.”
He contended that what is being missed in a lot media coverage about Flynn is it can both be true that retired three-star general lied (or failed to properly remember his conservations with Kislyak) and that he was treated unfairly by the FBI.
Flynn’s legal team has argued that the FBI agents did not warn their client that making false statements to them would be a crime, and that former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe dissuaded Flynn from having an attorney present.
“The judge has the authority to throw out the plea, if he believes the plea was not to a crime, and I think he should find, as a matter of law, that when…the only purpose of the question is to get you to lie, that is not a crime,” Dershowitz told Fox News.
“The question for the American public is, do we want the FBI to be springing criminal morality tests on our citizens?” he asked. “That’s not a proper function of law enforcement and I hope the judge would see that and say something about that.”
Dershowitz also affirmed Giuliani’s pronouncement over the weekend that only over his “dead body” would he ever allow Trump to be interviewed by Mueller.
“They’re a joke,” Giuliani said of the special counsel’s office.
“I think every reasonable defense attorney would give the same advice,” Dershowitz told Fox.
Giuliani understands this is an adversarial hearing, Dershowitz said, and that “Mueller will do anything to try to get people to sing or perhaps even to compose, and that cooperation is now off the table.”
Dershowitz predicted that a Mueller report is “on the way,” and it will find Trump committed no crimes, but will highlight his “political sins,” which, he said, is “not the proper function of a special counsel.”
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