But perhaps you’ve never faced a more dangerous investigation than the Mar-a-Lago investigation, an investigation focused on possible mishandling of top-secret documents.
In recent weeks, not only has the Justice Department appointed a special counsel with a reputation for being aggressive, but the dismissal of an independent arbitrator requested by President Trump and a judge’s clear dismissal of his attorney , a heightened sense of vulnerability. ‘ argument.
It’s impossible to predict how long the investigation will last or whether the Justice Department will take the unprecedented step of indicting former presidents and incumbents.
But Trump is no longer as shielded from prosecution as he was during his presidency, and some legal experts say the Mar-a-Lago investigation is a simpler matter of fact than previous investigations he has dealt with. and concentrating on legal issues.
“Unlike many of these past investigations involving complex financial fraud, prosecutors must explain to jurors why the conduct is criminal in the first place. The crime is “about,” said former Justice Department prosecutor Robert Mintz.
In a searing opinion that goes back deep into history, the court conceded that the search of the former president’s property was unusual, but not so unusual as to give him special treatment.
“It’s rare to see a case cited in a 1794 Court of Appeals decision in the 1800s,” says Florida criminal defense attorney and former federal prosecutor David Weinstein.
“These are the foundational principles of long-standing law on which they have relied.”
Investigations, of course, are nothing new to Trump, and speculation about his legal dangers has always been irrelevant.
Last year, New York state prosecutors indicted Trump’s business, the Trump Organization, and its longtime chief financial officer, but not the former president. has amassed a multi-billion dollar net worth and accused the bank of misleading them, but those allegations were made in litigation rather than criminal cases.
As president, he was investigated by former special counsel and former FBI director Robert Mueller to determine whether his successful campaign in 2016 illegally colluded with Russia and whether he tried to sabotage the investigation. was investigated as to whether Mueller ultimately found insufficient evidence to allege a criminal conspiracy between the campaign and Russia, also citing the Justice Department’s longstanding policy of banning indictments of sitting presidents.
Obstruction of this investigation included an analysis of the constitution and the extent of presidential powers. However, prosecutors in the Mar-a-Lago investigation have largely denied any link to Trump’s former presidential status, and in a legal battle over special masters he was the commander-in-chief. He claimed that there were no classified records that he had access to as yet. it’s his.
In its opinion last week, the appellate panel also rejected the notion that Trump has the right to return records seized from his home or to have an independent arbitrator investigate them, calling this a “special He said it would create an exception.
An investigation into the records simmered for months until the August 8 FBI raid on Mar-a-Lago uncovered. By that point, Justice Department officials said they had developed good reason to believe the crime was committed in connection with the retention and interference of defense intelligence.
Since then, the investigation has shown signs of accelerating, with the Justice Department presenting evidence to a grand jury and granting immunity last month to secure testimony from Trump supporters.
Jack Smith is in charge of the investigation. Jack Smith previously headed the Public Interest Division of the Justice Department and most recently served as a war crimes prosecutor in The Hague. Smith is also overseeing key aspects of another Justice Department investigation related to efforts by Trump and his supporters to undo the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. The District Attorney for Fulton County, Georgia, is also separately investigating attempts to overturn the state’s results.
Donald Trump has announced that he will run for president in 2024
Smith’s appointment by Attorney General Merrick Garland came three days after Trump announced his candidacy for the White House. The announcement doesn’t stop the investigation, though it may speed up the pace to avoid clashing with the heart of the 2024 presidential election.
Former federal prosecutor Franklin Monsour Jr. said his candidacy could theoretically have a significant impact on the investigation. “Now someone is trying to be president again, and they’re trying to get their hands on the national security material again.”
But legal experts expect the Justice Department to weigh more than just the strength of evidence when deciding whether to proceed with a case. Questions will arise as to whether secret evidence can be presented. Also, given Trump’s ubiquitous name recognition and the enthusiastic response he generates from both sides, the feasibility of choosing an impartial jury.
The indictment of the former president also risks being viewed as political, further polarizing an already divided country and turning the courtroom into a circus-like atmosphere.
“Basically, the principle that no individual is above the rule of law is the practical politics that arises from making this kind of indictment against former presidents, especially those who are running for president again,” Mintz said. We are comparing it with the impact of
“It’s a very difficult decision,” he added.