Donald Trump — Following his departure from the White House, former US President Donald Trump was charged with holding over confidential information.
In addition to the document issue, Trump is facing seven charges of hindering efforts to examine the file storage at his Mar a Lago estate.
The claims also come as Trump pursues re-election to the presidency in 2024.
Despite the seriousness of the issue, legal experts say the indictment will not prevent him from running for president.
Donald Trump has recently had a tumultuous relationship with his legal staff, and the fissures continue to appear as one of his lawyers announced their withdrawal from the lawsuit.
The recent withdrawal
Lawyers Jim Trusty and John Rowley announced their withdrawal from the lawsuit.
Trusty stated in a court statement asking permission to withdraw:
“Mr. Trusty’s withdrawal is based upon irreconcilable differences between Counsel and Plaintiff, and Counsel can no longer effectively and properly represent Plaintiff.”
Trusty and Rowley said that they will no longer defend Donald Trump in the allegations brought forward by special counsel Jack Smith.
The allegations are related to classified government records Trump kept during his presidential campaign and his alleged obstruction of the FBI investigation into the materials.
When the previous president was apprised of the indictment, Trusty and Rowley declared their retirement.
Despite the allegations, Donald Trump stood firm and pleaded not guilty on Tuesday.
Although Jim Trusty and John Rowley have left the team, the defamation case is still ongoing, as Trump retains legal counsel in Florida for the civil complaint against CNN.
Even without Trusty and Rowley, Donald Trump’s attorneys are still fighting to get Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s criminal case transferred from state to federal court.
In May, they filed a request to transfer to federal court.
Trump’s attorneys contended that the allegations against him were linked to his duties as President.
Bragg’s office, on the other hand, claimed that his alleged hush money plan was already in action before Donald Trump was elected president.
They are also adamant on the issue being heard in the New York State Supreme Court.
Another hearing is scheduled for June 27 in Manhattan federal court before District Judge Alvin Hellerstein, who was nominated by former President Bill Clinton.
Donald Trump’s counsel asked Hellerstein on Thursday to dismiss Bragg’s request to send the case to the state Supreme Court.
The filing states:
“A criminal case is removable to federal court where a federal officer is charged for conduct for or relating to any act under color of federal office arising under color of his office and identifies a colorable federal defense.”
Donald Trump was charged with 34 counts of fabricating corporate documents in April.
They were linked to suspected payments to former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen for hush money payments during his presidential campaign in 2016.
The hush money payments were reportedly made to women who claimed to have had extramarital encounters with Trump, which Trump denies.
Donald Trump has entered a not guilty plea to the 34 counts of falsifying corporate documents.
In the midst of his denial, Trump’s team stated that the claims violate federal campaign finance regulations rather than state ones.
In their latest filing, they wrote:
“Such an alleged scheme, albeit nonexistent, could only violate federal, not state, campaign finance laws, as made clear by both the federal jurisprudence and the New York State election board.”
“Indeed, federal preemption is a classic example of a federal defense justifying removal.”
Despite the effort to transfer the case to federal court, it is still proceeding.
The lawsuit is presently before Judge Juan Merchan in New York State, and a trial date in New York County has been set for March 25, 2024.
The trial might take place in early 2024, in the midst of the Republican presidential primary season.