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Judge in Flynn Case Takes Unusual Step of Allowing 3rd Party Briefs

Sullivan's order signals his interest in hearing from parties outside the Justice Department and Flynn’s attorneys before making a decision in the case

FILE - Former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn leaves the federal courthouse in Washington, June 24, 2019.
Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP (File)

The federal judge overseeing the case involving retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn took the unusual step Tuesday night of inviting briefs from third parties, and he plans to set up a schedule soon to accept those filings.

Judge Emmet G. Sullivan said in a filing Tuesday he’ll allow individuals outside of the Justice Department and Flynn’s attorneys to submit filings in the case that might be able to provide the court with additional information or perspectives that might help him make a decision on whether to dismiss the charges against Flynn or let him withdraw his guilty plea, NBC News reports.

Citing a 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals case, Sullivan wrote that “an amicus brief should normally be allowed when a party is not represented competently or is not represented at all, when the amicus has an interest in some other case that may be affected by the decision in the present case… or when the amicus has unique information or perspective that can help the court beyond the help that the lawyers for the parties are able to provide.”

Attorney General William Barr directed federal prosecutors last week to abandon their prosecution of Michael Flynn, who served briefly as national security adviser in the early days of the Trump administration. Flynn admitted that he had lied to the FBI about his conversations during the transition with Russia's ambassador to the U.S.

Read the full story at NBCNews.com.

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