A judge declassified Trump documents after hearing arguments on the appointment of Jack Smith as special counsel

Washington – Special counsel Jack Smith and attorneys Former President Donald Trump Smith is back in a Florida federal court on Friday to begin a three-day hearing on whether he should be allowed to sue Trump.

U.S. District Judge Eileen Cannon, Southern District of Florida

US District Court, Southern District of Florida

The former president challenged the appointment and funding of the special counsel argued In a February filing, Smith “does not have jurisdiction to hear this action.” Trump’s legal team used a legal theory that has been rejected by the courts in attempts resist Other independent judicial inquiries. Trump’s lawyers say Attorney General Merrick Garland lacks constitutional authority to appoint Smith, arguing that a special counsel must be appointed by the president and approved by the Senate.

In court, the government warned of dire consequences if Trump’s opinion is accepted, and other officials in the Justice Department lack the authority to handle critical tasks.

District Court Judge Eileen Cannon It has taken the unusual step of inviting outside groups to argue each side of the issue before the court. Former federal prosecutors and elected officials filed a brief Supporters of Smith’s nomination urged him to rule quickly against Trump to avoid what they said were unnecessary investigations into the matter. The panel includes former Justice Department officials who served under Republican presidential administrations and a former Republican member of Congress.

On the other hand, former U.S. Attorneys General Edwin Meese and Michael Mukesi, who served as attorneys general in Republican administrations, wrote to bolster Trump’s challenge. “Nearly all” special prosecutors in recent history were previously appointed by a sitting president and confirmed by the Senate as U.S. attorneys, they said. Smith is “neither,” they wrote, a contention the group will make in court Friday.

The Trump team challenged the funding the Justice Department uses for special counsel investigations — indefinite federal funds appropriated by Congress to help special counsels carry out their work.

In legal filings earlier this year, the special counsel supported his nomination and wrote that Congress authorizes the Attorney General to commission prosecutors to conduct investigations independent of the Justice Department. Attorneys wrote that Smith’s appointment was authorized by special counsel regulations that govern the work of other investigations, including former special counsels Robert Mueller and John Durham appointed during the Trump administration.

“The attorney general has long used these powers to appoint special prosecutors with responsibilities such as special counsel, with consistent support from Congress, the executive branch, and the courts,” Smith wrote.

Trump’s argument resembles the failed strategy of President Biden’s son, Hunter Biden Tried Trump’s Delaware U.S. attorney, David Weiss, is seeking to have two lawsuits filed against him dismissed.

Prosecutors also disputed Trump’s claim that the special counsel was improperly funded based on legal and historical precedent.

Cannon The case against Trump has not yet set a trial date and is still considering several legal challenges filed earlier this year. The former president, after he left office, was accused of mishandling national security information — including some classified federal material. He and two aides are accused of conspiring to obstruct a secret records investigation.

All three have He pleaded not guilty and denied wrongdoing. None of the defendants will be required to attend the upcoming hearings, which will also deal with the proposed lawsuit Cock order Above Trump’s speech.

Last month, the special counsel launched an effort to limit Trump’s public comments about law enforcement in the case. Smith asked Cannon to change the conditions of the former president’s early release to prevent him from making comments similar to those he has made about the case over the past few months. Smith accused Trump of “putting law enforcement officials involved in the investigation and prosecution of this case at risk and threatening the integrity of these proceedings.”

Federal prosecutors move to curb Trump’s public comments after making false claims FBI agents A court-authorized search warrant was executed at his Mar-a-Lago home in August 2022, giving him “power to shoot.” Trump was not at Mar-a-Lago during the search. The identities are part of a federal investigation into the former president’s handling of sensitive government records.

Smith alleged that Trump had “totally subverted these standard procedures by misrepresenting a plan to kill him, his family and US Secret Service agents.” Without providing specific cases, prosecutors wrote that Trump’s language was “pose.”[s] A significant, immediate and foreseeable risk to law enforcement agencies” and must be minimized as a result.

Prosecutors accused Trump’s legal team of pushing back and trying to undercut the former president’s speech on the campaign trail.

Cannon is expected to consider their arguments in court Monday after hearing from both sides regarding the appointment of Smith’s special counsel.

On Tuesday, the judge will hold a sealed hearing on attorney-client privilege issues and hear arguments on the evidence in open court.

Smith leveled four charges against the former president. 2020 Presidential Election. He has pleaded not guilty to those charges, and the case has been put on hold while the Supreme Court considers his requests for presidential immunity from prosecution.

With the Supreme Court case still pending and Cannon’s long pretrial schedule, the chances that any of Smith’s cases against Trump will go to trial before the presidential election are slim.

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