On Wednesday, April 3, 2024, RawStory reported that special counsel Jack Smith had filed a new court document criticizing proposed jury instructions in the case against Donald Trump.

In the filing, Smith strongly objected to instructions proposed last month by Judge Aileen Cannon. Cannon’s proposals would have asked jurors to consider if the classified documents taken by Trump could be viewed as his personal property rather than official government records.

However, Smith argued against this “legal premise” put forward by Cannon. He said that including such an instruction would distort and misrepresent the ongoing trial against the former president.

The special counsel then thoroughly disputed Trump’s claims that he had a right to keep sensitive national security documents after leaving office. Smith said Trump’s argument that he can designate presidential records as personal under the Presidential Records Act is “not based on any facts.”

Smith explained that this justification was invented over a year after Trump departed the White House and does not align with any actual decisions made during his presidency. To back this up, Smith revealed new details from his investigation.

Investigators interviewed Trump’s own representatives tasked with following the PRA, as well as senior White House officials like chiefs of staff and counsel. Not one of these witnesses had ever heard Trump say he considered any records personal or believed he could remove them from the White House by labeling them as such.

By presenting these “receipts” from interviews, Smith aimed to undermine the argument that Trump sincerely thought the classified materials, including information on foreign nuclear weapons, were appropriately deemed his own personal property after leaving presidential office. The special counsel’s latest filing represented a strong rebuttal to the jury instructions suggested in the highly politicized case against the former president.

 

 

Source: RawStory