Judge delays Flynn sentencing for second time

Judge delays Flynn sentencing for second time
© Aaron Schwartz

A federal judge on Monday delayed the sentencing of former national security adviser Michael Flynn, the second recent postponement in the former Trump aide’s case.

The delays stem from Flynn’s decision last month to withdraw his guilty plea of lying to the FBI about his contacts with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. during the Trump transition period.

Judge Emmet Sullivan’s order Monday canceled a sentencing hearing slated for Feb. 27. The judge, a Clinton appointee, did not schedule a new hearing for the former three-star Army general.

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The postponement allows both sides to prepare arguments over Flynn's recent claim that his former attorneys failed to give him adequate legal counsel earlier in the case, in violation of his constitutional rights.

Prosecutors previously told the court that Flynn’s former attorneys at the law firm of Covington & Burling might need to testify. 

In response to these moves, Sullivan’s order Monday instructed both parties to discuss the terms of Flynn’s waiver of attorney-client privilege, so his former lawyers could share information with prosecutors.

Flynn pleaded guilty two years ago to lying to federal investigators. Last year, he fired his attorneys at Covington & Burling and hired conservative firebrand Sidney Powell to represent him.

Flynn last month backed out of a plea agreement he had made with the special counsel's office to cooperate with its probe into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential race. At that point, Sullivan postponed sentencing in light of Flynn's withdrawal of his guilty plea.