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WorldJudge in Trump classified materials case chastised by prosecutors for her "fundamentally...


Judge in Trump classified materials case chastised by prosecutors for her “fundamentally flawed”

Federal prosecutors scolded the judge in charge of former President Trump‘s case in Florida. They told her not to use jury instructions that are based on a bad legal idea.

In an unusual way, Judge Aileen Cannon told the prosecutors and defense lawyers to submit suggestions for jury instructions for most of the charges, even though it’s not clear when the trial will happen. She asked the lawyers to give their opinions on different explanations of the law. These explanations seem to support the argument of the former Republican president that he was allowed to keep the important documents that he has been accused of having.

Legal experts were surprised by the decision and Jack Smith’s team was worried. They said on Tuesday that a law from 1978 doesn’t apply in this case about very secret documents. This law says presidents have to give back official records when they leave office, but they can keep personal ones.

Prosecutors said that those documents were not personal and there is no evidence that Trump ever marked them as his own. They said he only made up the suggestion after people found out he took boxes of records from the White House to his Mar-a-Lago estate. And the people they talked to didn’t support his argument.

“No one heard Trump say he was making records personal or that when he moved the boxes to Mar-a-Lago, he thought he was making them personal under the PRA,” prosecutors stated. “Actually, none of the witnesses knew anything about it when asked. ”

The team of Smith said that if the judge keeps on mentioning the law about presidential records in her instructions to the jury, she should tell the lawyers right away so they can ask for a review.

The documents show that the prosecutors are still frustrated with how Cannon is dealing with the case.

The judge chosen by Trump has not made a decision on several requests to end the case. There are also other arguments between the two sides, and the date for the trial is still not decided. This means that the case, which Smith’s team says has a lot of evidence, might not be finished by the time of the November election.

Cannon was criticized for allowing an independent person to review documents from an FBI search of Mar-a-Lago after Trump requested it. Last month, Cannon listened to arguments about two of Trump’s requests to dismiss the case: one that said the Presidential Records Act allowed him to call the documents personal, and another that said he was allowed to keep them because of that.

The judge seemed unsure about that argument but didn’t make a decision right away. Days after, she told both sides to create jury instructions that answered this question: “Can a president decide by himself which records are personal or presidential during his time in office. ” Neither a judge nor a group of people in a court can decide or look at that type of decision.

The former president’s choice to keep personal records instead of giving them back to the government, means that the president sees those records as personal under the PRA.

Prosecutors said that the way they understood the law is incorrect. They also told Cannon to quickly reject the defence motion to dismiss.

They said that the difference between personal and presidential records doesn’t matter when it comes to a former President having documents with national defense information. The law that makes it a crime to keep national defense information illegally should not consider the Presidential Records Act when giving instructions to the jury.

“They said that according to the information we have now, the PRA should not be involved in the trial. ”

Trump, who is expected to be the Republican candidate for the 2024 election, is accused of breaking the law by sharing secret documents. He could be charged with many serious crimes related to this. The former president is facing four criminal cases in Florida. He says he didn’t do anything wrong in any of them.

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