UNITED STATES: On Friday, the U.S. Justice Department took action to speed up its appeal of a decision authorising the FBI to search the Florida estate of former President Donald Trump and seize records.
The Justice Department claimed late on Friday in a court filing that its investigation into the storage of government data at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort is still being significantly hampered by its inability to obtain the non-classified documents.
The Justice Department is requesting that the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that all papers in the case must be filed by November 11 and that any required hearings be scheduled as soon as the briefing is finished.
The government claimed that Trump’s attorneys are against the request. “After having weeks to prepare their arguments, the DOJ is suddenly starting a pointless fight over a nine-day disparity in filing timelines,” Trump spokesperson Taylor Budowich wrote in an email.
The Justice Department asserted that it is unable to review documents that were kept with the classified information because it is currently prohibited from seeing the approximately 11,000 non-classified documents that were found during the search.
Those non-classified data, according to the government, “may shed light” on how the documents were delivered to or stored at the Mar-a-Lago estate and who might have had access to them.
According to the submission on Friday, the records might also be used as proof of contraventions of federal laws against obstruction and the concealing or removal of official records.
If the government wins its appeal, the Justice Department claims that a hurried timeframe may allow the government to “move swiftly launch its comprehensive investigation without constraints on its review and use of evidence gathered under a legitimate search warrant.”
The government’s lawyers further stated that if the Atlanta-based appeals court upholds the Justice Department’s position, it would put an end to the legal dispute over the items found during the search and the external examination of those records.
Senior U.S. District Judge Raymond Dearie, who is the special master, has set a deadline of December 16 for completion of that review.
This month, the appeals court sided with the Justice Department and overturned portions of the judge’s decision that had barred the department from using sensitive records seized during the search in its investigation.
These restrictions included preventing the department from bringing up the contents of the records in witness interviews or bringing charges before a grand jury.
Additionally, as part of its procedures, the 11th Circuit barred Dearie from having access to sensitive documents. On September 5, Cannons overruled the Justice Department’s concern and allowed Trump’s request for an outside examination of the seized documents.
As a result of Trump and the government’s inability to sign a contract with an outside vendor to hold the documents as part of the review, that process has already been delayed.
Trump’s attorneys contended that Cannon’s decision to deny Dearie’s request that Trump confirms the list of documents removed from the property was outside the purview of the special master’s power on Thursday.
Without any supporting evidence, Trump has asserted that FBI agents planted evidence when they searched his resort on August 8, and yet, his attorneys have not made the same claims in court.
“The special master proceedings could lead to protracted litigation if such a resolution is not made by this court,” declared the government.
It is referred to as Trump v. the USA, 22-13005, US Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit.