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Judge Rules Against Trump in Motion to Dismiss Charges but Hands Him a Nice Consolation Prize

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The federal judge overseeing the trial of former President Donald Trump on charges of mishandling classified documents on Monday rejected a bid from Trump’s lawyers to have multiple charges dismissed.

U.S. District Judge Alieen Cannon did, however, strike one part of the indictment against Trump that claimed he showed a military map to a former aide who did not have sufficient clearance to view it, according to the Washington Examiner.

In her ruling in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Cannon took a sour tone concerning the indictment brought by special counsel Jack Smith but said most of the claims from Trump did not rise to the level of tossing out the charges against him.

“The identified deficiencies, even if generating some arguable confusion, are either permitted by law, raise evidentiary challenges not appropriate for disposition at this juncture, and/or do not require dismissal even if technically deficient, so long as the jury is instructed appropriately and presented with adequate verdict forms as to each Defendants’ alleged conduct,” she wrote.

“Having reviewed these arguments in their totality and carefully considered the Superseding Indictment as a whole, the Court agrees that much of the language in the Superseding Indictment is legally unnecessary to serve the function of an indictment as explained in the foregoing caselaw,” the judge said.

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“The Court also notes the risks that can flow from a prosecutor’s decision to include in a charging document an extensive narrative account of his or her view of the facts, especially in cases of significant public interest,” Cannon wrote.

She said the allegation about Trump showing the document to a person with a clearance was “not appropriate.”

The former president’s legal team had objected to the section of the indictment, claiming he was charged with possessing certain documents, not showing them to others, according to the Examiner.

The prosecution contended that the section was important to show Trump’s cavalier attitude toward classified documents.

Will Trump beat these charges?

Although that challenge did not fully succeed, before the day ended, Trump’s attorneys had launched another attack on the prosecution, according to The New York Times.

They argued FBI agents acted improperly after snaring boxes of documents in a raid on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago property in Palm Beach, Florida, in August 2022.

The filing said that the prosecution claimed the order of documents in the boxes was intact when it was not.

The defense said the nature of how documents were stuffed in boxes showed the hurried and haphazard way the boxes were packed as the Trump administration left Washington in January 2021, and that by rearranging the contents of the boxes, the FBI had affected Trump’s ability to use that in his defense.

“The prosecution team violated President Trump’s due process rights by failing to keep the documents intact and in the same order as they were found during the raid,” the filing said.

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The prosecution has blamed the shifting of contents on the size and nature of items in the boxes.

But the detail is a big deal since part of Trump’s defense is expected to be that documents were packed in chronological order, with no regard for classification marking, according to Just the News.

“Prosecutors and investigators should never tamper with or alter evidence in their possession, including the order of documents in a box, because one never knows what may become relevant or crucial to a court or jury later in a case,” Harvard Law Professor Emeritus Alan Dershowitz said.


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Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack can be reached at jackwritings1@gmail.com.
Location
New York City
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Foreign Policy, Military & Defense Issues




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