How is this legal? It can’t be!
Federal prosecutor Jack Smith warned the judge overseeing one of the criminal cases involving Donald Trump against thinking about delaying the trial.
According to Newsweek, legal representatives for the former president have sought to postpone the Florida case until after the one in Washington, D.C., citing the demanding trial schedules that require President Trump and his legal team to be in two different places simultaneously. However, Smith, a U.S. attorney and special counsel, contended in a court filing submitted on Thursday that Trump’s legal team had not disclosed that they filed a motion the previous evening to halt the D.C. proceedings “until their motion to dismiss the indictment based on presidential immunity is ‘fully resolved.'”
In an unfortunate yet very strange typographical error, Smith concluded the filing by stating, “This Court should allow itself to be manipulated in this fashion.” A spokesperson for Smith’s office confirmed that the missing word should have been “not.” It was meant to read: “This Court should not allow itself to be manipulated in this fashion.”
The Florida case, overseen by Judge Aileen Cannon, revolves around the possession of classified documents at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, recovered during an FBI raid last summer. Out of the 13,000 documents seized, 103 were classified. Federal law designates classified documents as the property of the U.S. government and mandates their submission for archiving when a presidential term ends.
Smith is handling two cases against Trump. The other one in D.C. pertains to allegations that the former president attempted to overturn the 2020 election results that saw Joe Biden elected. Trump is facing several other criminal trials, including one in Georgia related to allegations of a conspiracy to unlawfully overturn the state’s 2020 election results. Throughout all these cases, Trump maintains his innocence and pleads not guilty.
For months, Trump’s legal team has been striving to delay the start of the Florida classified documents case until after the 2024 election. The D.C. election fraud case is scheduled to commence on March 4, while the documents trial is set to begin on May 20.
During a hearing regarding the adjournment on Wednesday, Judge Cannon mentioned her willingness to make “reasonable adjustments” to the trial schedule but did not commit to postponing the trial’s start date. She expressed her doubts, stating, “I’m just having a hard time seeing how realistically this work can be accomplished in this compressed period of time, given the realities that we’re facing.” Smith’s court filing followed Cannon’s decision.
“As the Government argued to the Court yesterday, the trial date in the District of Columbia case should not be a determinative factor in the Court’s decision whether to modify the dates in this matter,” he wrote. “Trump’s actions in the hours following the hearing in this case illustrate the point and confirm his overriding interest in delaying both trials at any cost.”