US gov’t appeals halt of Trump’s classified files review | News

The Justice Department asked a court to lift a ban on reviewing confidential documents seized from the home of the former Florida president.

The U.S. Department of Justice has asked a federal appeals court to allow it to continue to review classified documents seized in a court of law. FBI search of former President Donald Trump real estate in Florida.

In a filing before a U.S. appeals court on Friday, the Justice Department said it should have stopped a ruling earlier preventing prosecutors from relying on classified documents in their criminal investigation.

The department also requested a designated third party to examine all records obtained during the FBI raid on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach after his presidency ended. .

Following an unprecedented search of the former president’s assets last month, the Justice Department said it was investigating the illegal retention of government records – some marked as top secret, including “top secret” – as well as obstruction of a federal investigation.

The Justice Department must now convince the Atlanta-based appeals court, with a conservative majority, to take its side in the investigation of the records. Trump appointees make up six of the 11 active judges on the court.

Second attempt

The government’s move comes after US District Judge Aileen Cannon on Thursday waste similar requests from the Department of Justice.

Cannon, whom Trump appoint on the bench in 2020, said she will tell Senior U.S. Judge Raymond Dearie, who is taking on the role of a “special master“In this case, to prioritize the classified records in his review, which she set a November 30 deadline for completion.

There were about 100 classified documents among 11,000 files collected during an FBI court-approved search on August 8 of the former president’s home.

If Cannon’s ruling goes into effect, experts say, it could potentially stall the Justice Department’s investigation into those top-secret files.

The Justice Department said the delay in reviewing classified documents, which it said was government property, “hindered the government’s efforts to protect national security”.

Friday’s government filings sometimes directly influence Cannon’s prior decisions in the case.

Prosecutors said the judge cited court documents from Trump’s attorneys suggesting the former president may have declassified documents marked as classified, but legal briefs That argument does not suggest that Trump did so.

“The court erred in granting extraordinary relief based on unfounded probabilities,” the government lawyers wrote.

The Justice Department also criticized Cannon’s direction that classified records be released to Dearie and Trump’s attorneys as part of an external review of all records made during the investigation. reviewed and described the former president’s attorneys as likely witnesses to “relevant events” in the criminal investigation.

The appeal will be heard first by a panel of three judges, but could ultimately end in the Supreme Court.

Trump is facing growing legal pressure with the Justice Department saying top secret documents were “potentially concealed” to impede the FBI’s investigation into the mishandling of classified documents. his kind.

He denied all wrongdoing and said the raid on his mansion was “one of the most serious attacks on democracy in the history of our country”. made it a talking point of his political rallies.

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