In a stunning and very rare move today Federal Judge Anthony J Trenga has thrown out the conviction of a Mike Flynn’s partner Bijan Rafiekian (Flynn Intel Group) and granted the defendants’ motion to acquit. [Hat Tip to Techno-Fog for the ruling]
This is a huge blow to the DOJ-NSD who framed their special counsel case on sketchy FARA violations and bamboozled the jury with dubious legal theories. This type of intervention by a federal judge is very rare. Here’s the ruling:
“The evidence was insufficient as a matter of law for the jury to convict Rafiekian on either count”
The Government “failed to offer substantial evidence” that Rafiekian acted as an agent of a foreign government”
“There is no substantial evidence” that he agreed to cooperate subject to the direction/control of Turkey; no evidence of any implied agreement w/ Turkey.
“There is no evidence of discussions or suggestions, let alone an agreement, express or implied, to either avoid filing under FARA or to cause the filing of a false FARA registration statement.”
On General Flynn and the alleged FARA conspiracy: The government told the Court that “Flynn was not a member of the alleged conspiracy.”
The DOJ/NSD has been using sketchy FARA (Sec. 951) designations to construct legal arguments within their FISA applications.
The DOJ National Security Division have been using FARA, accusing people of being “agents of a foreign power”, in order to conduct political surveillance.