| 24 July 2024, Wednesday |

US resists calls by Trump to postpone trial in classified documents case

US Special Counsel Jack Smith urged the federal judge presiding over Donald Trump’s criminal prosecution for the retention of secret records on Thursday to deny the former president’s plea to postpone his criminal trial.

Prosecutors from Smith’s office reaffirmed their appeal to U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon in a court document to set Trump’s trial for Dec. 11, telling her that “there is no basis in law or fact” to delay.

“The court should reject defendants’ invitation to defer consideration of a trial date, and should set jury selection to begin on December 11, 2023,” they wrote.

Trump, front-runner for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, pleaded not guilty in federal court on June 13 in Miami to charges that he had unlawfully kept classified documents when he left office in 2021 and tried to obstruct justice when the federal government sought to retrieve them.

He is charged alongside his aide, Walt Nauta.

In a joint filing with Nauta on Monday, lawyers for both men asked Cannon to postpone their criminal trial.

“President Trump is running for President of the United States and is currently the likely Republican Party nominee. This undertaking requires a tremendous amount of time and energy, and that effort will continue until the election on November 5, 2024,” they wrote.

Cannon initially set the trial for Aug. 14 – a date that both sides oppose because they say they will need more time to prepare. Smith’s team has sought to delay until Dec. 11.

Federal prosecutors and attorneys for Trump and Nauta are due to appear before Cannon in a Florida federal courthouse on Tuesday to discuss scheduling and other logistical issues.

  • Reuters