A former federal prosecutor who quit the Justice Department in protest over its handling of Republican operative Roger Stone’s criminal case in a scathing article Monday accused the department of a “betrayal of the rule of law” and Attorney General William Barr of “egregious” conduct by intervening in that case and the one of Michael Flynn, United States President Donald Trump’s first national security advisor.
The ex-prosecutor, Jonathan Kravis, also warned that the Justice Department’s intervention in the Stone and Flynn cases, “to protect an ally of the president … betrays this principle” of a “commitment to equal justice under the law.”
“I am convinced that the department’s conduct in the Stone and Flynn cases will do lasting damage to the institution,” Kravis wrote in an op-ed in The Washington Post. Barr is head of the Justice Department. A spokeswoman for the attorney general did not immediately respond to a request for comment from CNBC.
Kravis’ article came four days after Barr, in a stunning decision, approved the Justice Department’s decision to ask a judge to dismiss the criminal case against Flynn, whose prosecution has been repeatedly criticized by Trump, as has Stone’s.
A retired Army general who briefly served as Trump’s first national security advisor, Flynn pleaded guilty in late 2017 to lying to FBI agents. He had reaffirmed his guilt at a sentencing hearing a year later that was aborted to give him more time to cooperate with then-special counsel Robert Mueller.
n a filing Thursday, the interim U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, former Barr advisor Timothy Shea, argued that the FBI’s interview of Flynn was not justified by a counterintelligence investigation, and that his lies about what he said to a Russian diplomat were not “material” to that probe.
None of the career prosecutors who handled Flynn’s case signed off of the dismissal request, which has yet to be approved by the judge in the case. Kravis’ op-ed also came three months after he resigned from the Justice Department, where he had worked for a decade.
“I left a job I loved because I believed the department had abandoned its responsibility to do justice in one of my cases, United States v. Roger Stone,” Kravis wrote.
“At the time, I thought that the handling of the Stone case, with senior officials intervening to recommend a lower sentence for a longtime ally of President Trump, was a disastrous mistake that the department would not make again,” he wrote.