Lawyers for former President Donald Trump have asked a judge to move the trial over his alleged mishandling of classified documents until after the 2024 presidential election.
The trial is currently scheduled to begin May 20, 2024, in Florida, but lawyers for Trump said that special counsel Jack Smith has not provided critical information for the defense to prepare for the trial. Trump’s lawyers asked for the trial to be moved until mid-November 2024.
“The Special Counsel’s Office has not provided some of the most basic discovery in the case,” said the motion from lawyers Christopher Kise and Todd Blanche. “Given the current schedule, we cannot understate the prejudice to President Trump arising from his lack of access to these critical materials months after they should have been produced.”
If granted, the trial would take place after the November 5, 2024 presidential election, which Trump could be running in. The former president is currently the frontrunner for the Republican nomination and has climbed ahead of President Joe Biden in some recent polling.
“The demands of the Special Counsel’s Office must give way to the constitutional rights of the defendants and the interests of judicial economy,” the filing said. Trump’s team also said that insufficient accommodations had been made for them and the president to view the evidence.
Prosecutors with the Department of Justice say that they will provide further evidence by Friday.
“This production will include certain materials that Defendants have described as outstanding, including audio recordings of interviews and information related to the classification reviews conducted in the case,” DOJ prosecutors said.
Trump is accused of storing information regarding defense and weapons capabilities of both the United States and foreign countries; United States nuclear programs; potential vulnerabilities of the United States and its allies to military attack; and plans for possible retaliation in response to a foreign attack.
Mar-a-Lago resort property manager Carlos De Oliveira and Trump aide Walt Nauta are also facing charges stemming from the document investigation. All three have pled not guilty.
Trump, who has faced a number of federal and state prosecutions, has said that the document’s case against him is politically motivated.
“The ridiculous and baseless indictment of me by the Biden administration’s weaponized department of injustice will go down as among the most horrific abuses of power in the history of our country,” Trump said in his first speech since the document indictment against him was announced. “Many people have said that; Democrats have even said it. This vicious persecution is a travesty of justice.”
An investigation into Biden’s handling of classified documents is still ongoing, but no charges have yet been brought.