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Home High profile ‘His lawyers tell Mar-a-Lago judge that it’s very difficult to handle hush-money trial defense and ‘critical’ deadlines at the same time because they cannot prepare properly

‘His lawyers tell Mar-a-Lago judge that it’s very difficult to handle hush-money trial defense and ‘critical’ deadlines at the same time because they cannot prepare properly


Trump's defense is attempting to postpone significant Mar-a-Lago deadlines, stating that it's nearly impossible to handle them and the hush-money trial simultaneously.

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Donald Trump, Jack Smith

Donald Trump (left) (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall); Jack Smith (right) (AP Photo: J. Scott Applewhite.)

Donald Trump’s defense lawyers repeated their request to delay important Mar-a-Lago case deadlines, stating that it’s very difficult to handle the hush-money trial and the “critical stage” of the Espionage Act case at the same time.

The Thursday filing from Christopher Kise, Todd Blanche, and Emil Bove argued that U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon should move a CIPA § 5(a) Notice deadline until three weeks after Trump’s expected six-week New York trial ends.

As Law&Crime explained earlier in the week, the Department of Justice describes a CIPA § 5(a) Notice as the “linchpin” of the Classified Information Procedures Act, a statute that details how to protect classified information while using it in a criminal proceeding.

In a weekend filing, special counsel Jack Smith emphasized the “importance” of the “crucial” CIPA § 5(a) Notice in “getting the case to trial,” as the notice will reveal whether the Trump defense intends to use classified materials obtained through discovery “in any manner in connection with any trial or pretrial proceeding[.]”

Smith asserted that the Trump team “must stop” pushing “reflexively” for more delays whenever Cannon sets a deadline. He implored the Mar-a-Lago judge to keep the May 9 CIPA § 5(a) Notice and expert witness disclosure deadlines in place, arguing that the defense has had months to meet the deadlines and should not be rewarded with “open-ended” delay based on Trump choosing to have the same lawyers defend him in the Mar-a-Lago and New York criminal cases.

More Law&Crime coverage: Trump shares Jesse Watters quote on Truth Social about hush-money trial jury, risking another gag order violation after DA threatened ‘incarceration’

Trump lawyers responded on Thursday that Smith is overlooking the “obvious and significant harm” to Trump that would result from keeping the May 9 deadlines in place.

“Simply put, President Trump and his lawyers cannot prepare—or even discuss—the required filings anywhere but an appropriate SCIF, a very difficult task given President Trump and Messrs. Blanche and Bove’s involvement in People v. Trump, Ind. No. 71543-2023 in New York, New York,” the response said, rejecting the special counsel’s contention that the defense twiddled its thumbs for months simply to delay.

“President Trump and his lawyers have not been sitting idle over the past months and have worked diligently to advance the case forward,” the response continued. “That said, certain tasks remain for completion which can only be accomplished in the Florida SCIF.”

The defense further stated that attorney Bove is “principally responsible for all classified and CIPA litigation in this case on behalf of President Trump,” and that local Florida counsel “are not capable of handling alone the tasks remaining to finalize the CIPA § 5(a) process.”

The lawyers called it “disingenuous at best” of Smith to say that local counsel with security clearances could fill Bove’s role since the Special Counsel’s Office (SCO) praised Bove’s “experience” on this very issue in court last month.

“We expect, based on Mr. Bove's experience, that the Court will file a sufficient notice in this case, as emphasized in the reply. The notice deadline is important at this stage of the case,

The defense also mentioned in a footnote that Smith is aware that local counsel cannot complete the task.

As the SCO is well aware, local counsel are not even able to discuss the relevant issues or seek any guidance from Mr. Bove outside the Florida SCIF.

Check out the most recent request from Trump for a delay here.

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