Wynn wants suit tossed
Just three days after beefing up his legal team, former casino kingpin Steve Wynn has asked a federal court to dismiss a civil suit brought against him by the Department of Justice (DOJ).
stands in violation of his constitutional rights
In a court filing Monday, Wynn alleged that compelling him to register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) stands in violation of his constitutional rights. This is one of the “three main reasons” why the DOJ suit should get tossed, according to the new filing at the US District Court for the District of Columbia.
The second of those reasons posits that even if the DOJ’s allegations about Wynn were true — that he lobbied the Trump administration on behalf of the Chinese government without disclosing his status as a “foreign agent” — his requirement to file under FARA expired as soon as his alleged conduct stopped in 2017.
Reason number three maintains that Wynn’s conduct, as alleged by the DOJ’s complaint, “does not meet the legal standards for triggering the law’s registration requirement.”
Registering after the fact
The DOJ filed the complaint against Wynn in May 2022, the first affirmative civil lawsuit under FARA in over 30 years. The federal body said it sent Wynn letters in 2018, 2021, and 2022 informing him of his requirement to register under FARA and has sought an injunction from the court compelling Wynn to do so.
On Monday, Wynn argued that, under DC Circuit precedent, any compulsion he had to register expired by October 2017. This date is when the DOJ alleges Wynn’s relationship with Beijing concluded.
violations of the First and the Fifth
Within Monday’s filing, Wynn also cited violations of the First and the Fifth, if a court should force him to register under FARA. Wynn’s defense stated that, if forced to comply, “it would contradict previous statements Wynn made to the government asserting he had not acted as a foreign agent under the law.”
CNN reported the filing as saying the government: “cannot force Wynn to (1) provide evidence that could be used to prosecute him for perjury or false statements; and (2) state his agreement with a government message he disputes.”
Timely legal team addition
The feds have until August 15 to respond to Wynn’s motion. Wynn’s fightback against the suit coincides with the news last week he’d expanded his legal team. Joining Wynn’s corner was veteran Washington DC trial lawyer Robert Luskin of Paul Hastings, a Friday court filing revealed.
Luskin famously represented ex-world champion cyclist Lance Armstrong in his showdown with the US government over performance-boosting drugs.