April 17, 2024

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Classified documents: Trump calls for dismissal of Florida investigation

Classified documents: Trump calls for dismissal of Florida investigation

Donald Trump went to court in Florida on Thursday to ask his lawyers to drop charges against him for accidentally handling classified documents after he left the White House.

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Judge Eileen Cannon, who is in charge of the case, is holding a one-day hearing at a courthouse north of Miami to hear requests to dismiss proposed by the 77-year-old billionaire's lawyers.

The Republican presidential nominee in November pleaded guilty in June to charges of compromising national security by keeping classified documents.

Among these documents, some are “top secret”: information about military programs or even nuclear weapons. After he left the White House in January 2021, they were kept at his private home in Mar-a-Lago, Florida, instead of being transferred to the National Archives as required by law.

He is also accused of trying to destroy evidence in the case, for which he faces a total of 41 cases.

According to his lawyers, Donald Trump is entitled to keep these documents under the terms of the Presidential Records Act, and a judge should dismiss his charges.

But special prosecutor Jack Smith, who filed the indictment against the former president, rejected that argument in court documents.

Jack Smith said Donald Trump “is not authorized to have classified documents (let alone in unsecured locations at Mar-a-Lago).”

The trial, originally scheduled for May 20, will probably be postponed for several months, with Judge Cannon preferring a timetable spaced out enough to allow for “flexibility,” particularly because of the possibility of overlap with other criminal proceedings against the former president.

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Donald Trump's lawyers argue that “a fair trial cannot be held until after the 2024 presidential election.”

If he is re-elected, Donald Trump, once he takes office in January 2025, could order a halt to federal proceedings against him.