Former US President Donald Trump had to deal with two legal setbacks in two days in the case of state secrets he was storing at his home. On Wednesday, the Court of Appeal ruled The Ministry of Justice has the right to continue investigating these documents. A lower court had earlier ruled that the judiciary could not continue investigating the confiscated documents before the so-called special master, a neutral arbitrator, she saw. The court — which includes two judges appointed by then-President Trump and one by President Obama — left little of that judgment.
On Tuesday, Trump and his lawyers were already reprimanded by the same special educator, Judge Raymond Deere. While the former president insisted he did not keep any classified state documents at his home, his lawyers refused to identify documents that the Justice Department says are state secrets that Trump says are not. “It’s one of two,” Special Professor Derry said in a New York courtroom. „You can’t have your cake and eat it.”
Comments made by the Court of Appeals on Wednesday on the issue of document classification were closely aligned. The court wrote that Trump “indicates that he may have declassified these documents while he was president.” But there is no evidence in the case documents that this happened to any of the documents. When he appeared to the special master, [Trump] He provided no evidence to support his claim that he declassified any of these pieces.”
Derry, 76, was appointed special master at Trump’s request and with the approval of the Justice Department to investigate the documents in question. These are the pieces that Trump took home in Mar-a-Lago, Florida when he was forced to leave the White House after his election defeat in January 2021. By law, these documents must be turned over to the National Archives, although presidents can usually request that documents be kept. certain.
Trump and his lawyers have been at odds, first, with the National Archives, and, since early 2022, with the Department of Justice for more than a year. After the archives recovered 15 boxes of Mar-a-Lago, employees determined that the records contained in them also included documents marked as confidential or extremely confidential.
Since the court’s ruling is limited, there is ominous evidence in it for Trump
Since then, Trump has not wanted to hand over any other documents requested by the archive. His lawyers have been requesting a postponement from the archives. In June of this year, someone signed a statement saying that after a “careful search” of Trump’s residence, they had not found any other classified or state classified documents. Because the archive contained information, possibly from Trump employees, that this statement was false, the FBI was called. He inspected Mar-a-Lago on August 8.
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Even after the discovery of several classified and top-secret state documents, Trump and his lawyers maintained that the documents were not classified. According to Trump himself, he has “declassified all documents,” in other words: stripped of confidentiality. In its ruling, the court wrote that this was an empty comment. “Declassifying a document does not change its content, nor does it change its status to a personal document.”
It’s only if the court’s ruling is determined whether justice will continue to be served in the documents, however, there is ominous evidence for the case brought by Trump. “A provision that impedes or prohibits the use of classified material in a criminal investigation poses a real and serious danger to the United States and its people.”
This article was updated Thursday at 5:30 a.m. following the Court of Appeals decision.
A version of this article also appeared in The Sep 22, 2022
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