CTH covers the story with a simply idiotic lede: U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr Successfully Convicts Flynn Intel Group – Sentencing October 18th. It's the type of hysterical reaction at CTH that I've decried in the past--despite the great services CTH has performed for conservatives.
I won't presume to provide a tutorial on the federal criminal justice system, but the simple fact is that Bill Barr didn't indict Rafiekian and didn't prosecute him. When a subject is indicted by a federal grand jury and prosecution is undertaken by a local US attorney--who is a presidential appointee--there is very little an attorney general can do. In fact, other authorities, other branches of the US government, are also involved. For example a US attorney must seek the leave of the court to dismiss an indictment. Overall, the overall principle of federal prosecution, as set out by the Justice Manual, which sets forth Department of Justice policy, and which delegates broad authority to US Attorneys, is this:
The United States Attorney, within his/her district, has plenary authority with regard to federal criminal matters. This authority is exercised under the supervision and direction of the Attorney General and his/her delegates.
The statutory duty to prosecute for all offenses against the United States (28 U.S.C. § 547) carries with it the authority necessary to perform this duty. The USA is invested by statute and delegation from the Attorney General with the broadest discretion in the exercise of such authority.
I won't pretend to address all the complexities of these matters--I'm not competent to do so. Suffice it to say, that Barr would have been a fool if he had sought to terminate this prosecution in these circumstances. And Barr isn't a fool. In these matters, however, sundance IS a fool, and does his readers a real disservice.
This story isn't over. The following is Sidney Powell's (Flynn's lead lawyer) statement regarding the conviction of Bijan Rafiekian (edited from Powell's twitter feed):
A jury in Alexandria just returned verdicts of guilty against Mr. Rafiekian for "conspiracy & acting as an unregistered agent of Turkey." We note: General Flynn has cooperated with the government for two years. Obviously they did not need his testimony to get a conviction.
2. Significantly, the judge never even found enough evidence of a conspiracy to admit coconspirator hearsay. I remain very concerned about the government's abuse of power and over- criminalization of innocent business conduct. No one understood the statute, and Covington lawyer-
3. who did the #FARA filing with substantial coordination with the #DOJ--described the area of the law as "murky."
The government could not articulate the elements of the offense, nor did it have any evidence to support it's own definition of what was "material."
4. This case is ripe for reversal by the district court or on appeal. It will not withstand scrutiny.
In any event, General Flynn fulfilled his cooperation agreement with the government."