Donald Trump’s Legal Team Asks For A Delay Of Criminal Trial For Mishandling of Classified Documents
On Monday, Donald Trump called for an “indefinite” delay of the criminal trial for his alleged mishandling of national defense information, claiming that his candidacy for president would make it difficult to assemble an impartial jury.
U.S. District Court Judge Aileen Cannon originally ordered the trial to begin as soon as August 14. Upon a request from Special Counsel Jack Smith, she is now weighing the option of pushing it back to December. Smith believed that more time was needed to ensure that the classified information that will need to be entered in as evidence stays confidential.
Smith also asked that a sealed list of 84 witnesses be provided to Trump’s lawyers, a motion that Cannon quickly denied.
In the filing on Monday, Trump’s legal team stated that a December trial would be unfair to the former president, and requested a delay of almost a year.
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“Proceeding to trial during the pendency of a Presidential election cycle wherein opposing candidates are effectively (if not literally) directly adverse to one another in this action will create extraordinary challenges in the jury selection process and limit the Defendant’s ability to secure a fair and impartial adjudication,” wrote Trump’s attorneys.
Lawyers for Trump and his co-defendant Walt Nauta – a former Trump aide who was caught moving boxes of documents around the former president’s Mar-a-Lago residence — have declared that the trial will be incredibly complicated, despite the prosecution’s arguments that the case should be straightforward.
“Therefore, a measured consideration and timeline that allows for a careful and complete review of the procedures that led to this indictment and the unprecedented legal issues presented herein best serve the interests of the Defendants and the public,” the filing concluded.
Trump’s move is one that was anticipated by legal and political experts, as the former president is known for his attempts to draw out matters until he can either deflect or escape from them. If he were to win the presidential election, he may even have the constitutional powers necessary to pardon himself or dismiss the prosecution’s case.
Prosecutors working for Smith objected to any delay. Both sides have agreed to meet at Cannon’s courtroom in Fort Pierce, Florida, next Tuesday to discuss the request.
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