A federal appeals court in Washington appeared reluctant Tuesday to order the immediate dismissal of the case against former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn, raising sharp questions about whether such a step would be premature before a trial judge has an opportunity to consider the Justice Department’s motivation to drop the prosecution.

In a nearly four-hour hearing held over teleconference, a full sitting of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit grappled with Flynn’s push to prevent U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan from undertaking a review of the unusual abandonment of a prosecution in which the onetime Trump adviser twice pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI.

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