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Trump details defense strategy in classified documents case

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(The Center Square) – Former President Donald Trump’s legal team has laid out its most detailed defense strategy so far in a pre-trial fight over what documents prosecutors should have to provide to the defense in the case.

Trump, 77, the frontrunner for the GOP nomination to challenge incumbent President Joe Biden, has pleaded not guilty to 40 felony counts that allege he kept sensitive military documents, shared them with people who didn’t have security clearance, and tried to thwart the government’s attempts to get them back.

Trump’s team outlined what they said was a biased investigation designed to stop the former president from returning to the White House that involved multiple government agencies and U.S. intelligence agencies.

“The Special Counsel’s Office has disregarded basic discovery obligations and [Department of Justice] policies in an effort to support the Biden Administration’s egregious efforts to weaponize the criminal justice system in pursuit of an objective that President Biden cannot achieve on the campaign trail: slowing down President Trump’s leading campaign in the 2024 presidential election,” Trump’s attorneys wrote in the motion. “The patent absurdity of the Office’s efforts is illustrated by the fact that, while working toward a historic landslide victory in the Iowa caucuses yesterday, President Trump was also preparing to bring to Your Honor’s attention today the record of misrepresentations and discovery violations that have marred this case from the outset and illustrate that the Office has disregarded fundamental fairness and its legal obligations in favor of partisan election interference.”

Trump’s defense team further argued that the government was out to get Trump at any cost.

“The record discussed below strongly supports the existence of additional evidence of bias and political animus that is central to the defense of this case and must be produced promptly,” they wrote. “This includes evidence of collusion between the Office and the White House, DOJ, FBI, and [National Archives and Records Administration] to use the Presidential Records Act as a law enforcement tool, and to abuse grand jury procedures, in violation of due process, other constitutional rights, and the executive privilege.”

Trump’s defense team also argued that some of the materials that prosecutors allege are classified, aren’t classified.

“In fact, there are detailed descriptions of [President’s Daily Briefs] delivered to President Trump on the CIA’s public website, which are based on the same types of information – including directly attributed quotes – from the same witnesses that the [Office of Special Counsel] speaks about in hushed tones and seeks to relegate to SCIFs.”

SCIFs stands for sensitive compartmented information facilities.

Trump’s team also said that some of those agencies they claim are out to get the former president must turn over any evidence that could help in Trump’s defense.

“At the core of the pending discovery disputes is the failure of the Special Counsel’s Office to acknowledge the consequences for discovery of prosecutors’ extensive coordination and resource sharing with the White House, senior officials at DOJ and FBI, and numerous agencies in the Intelligence Community and other parts of the government,” Trump’s legal team wrote. “The Office cannot reap the benefits of these coordinated activities while ignoring exculpatory information and other discoverable evidence in the same offices.”

Trump has repeatedly called the federal and state criminal charges he faces a witch hunt designed to interfere with the 2024 presidential election. Prosecutors have denied those claims.

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