Judge Denies Trump Classified Documents Case For…

On Tuesday, the U.S. district court overseeing the prosecution of former President Donald Trump over his use of sensitive documents rendered a decision preventing two of the former president’s co-defendants from having direct access to classified information.



In earlier court filings, special counsel Jack Smith asked Judge Aileen Cannon to deny requests for access to the sensitive materials made by Trump co-defendants Walt Nauta and Carlos De Oliveira. His attorneys contended that Mr. De Oliveira, a manager at the former president’s Mar-a-Lago club, and Mr. Nauta, an advisor to President Trump, do not need to examine the papers.

At Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, Mr. Nauta and Mr. De Oliveira are accused of concealing and mismanaging sensitive materials.

Judge Cannon, who was nominated by President Trump, ruled Feb. 27 that Mr. Smith met the burden to keep the material from the two co-defendants in the case. Earlier, she allowed some of the classified materials to be accessed by the former president and his team.

“The Special Counsel has made a sufficient showing that Defendant Nauta and De Oliveira’s personal review of the materials produced in classified discovery would not be ’relevant and helpful’ to their defense,” she wrote.

Noting that the charges against President Trump are different, she added that “the document-related charges against Defendants Nauta and De Oliveira do not require proof that they willfully retained documents ’relating to the national defense’” and that Mr. Smith “also indicates that he does not intend to present evidence suggesting that Defendants Nauta and De Oliveira acted with an inculpatory purpose specific to them and to the 102 classified-marked documents seized from Mar-a-Lago.”

The court is “without any reasonably concrete example of a classified document, or documents, the substance of which appear helpful to either Defendant Nauta or De Oliveira in defending against the … charges against them,” the judge continued.

Additionally, Judge Cannon wrote, “Nauta and De Oliveira fail to rebut the Special Counsel’s showing as to the subject materials’ lack of helpfulness,” noting that the two “fail to provide any examples of documents produced in classified discovery that—if made available to them for personal review—would be helpful in countering the allegation that they conspired to help Defendant Trump ‘keep classified documents he had taken with him from the White House’ and ‘hide and conceal them from a federal grand jury.’”

Barry Russell
Barry Russell
A dedicated pro wrestling follower for more than a decade

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