Former President Donald Trump’s attempt to delay his trial on accusations of mishandling national security secrets until after the 2024 election was denied by a federal judge in Florida.
This after many presumed the Trump-appointed judge would be lenient to the former president. And while the request was denied, the judge, U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon, promised to reevaluate the case schedule in the first quarter of next year, as the New York Post reported.
Cannon said in a nine-page ruling published on Friday, that she would re-examine the "premature" defense request during a scheduling meeting between lawyers for the 77-year-old Trump and prosecutors from Special Counsel Jack Smith's office on March 1, 2024.
The Case's Progress
Last month, attorneys for Trump Todd Blanche and Christopher Kise requested Cannon to push back the trial date "until at least mid-November 2024," arguing that Smith's team had not fulfilled its discovery duties.
In Friday’s ruling, Cannon noted that “the quantity of discovery in this case remains exceedingly voluminous, even more so than initially thought.”
“[C]lassified discovery did not become available to Defendants in its complete form (including on substantive counts) until October 17, 2023,” the judge added.
“…Defendants need more time to review the discovery in this case. This Order aims to afford that opportunity in a reasonable fashion, balanced against the public’s right to a speedy trial," Cannon said.
Three days before Trump's trial on federal charges relating to his attempt to change the 2020 election results begins in Washington, D.C., Cannon will review the timeline of the Florida case.
Trump has been the undisputed frontrunner in the Republican primary race leading up to Super Tuesday, which will be held on March 5.
“Although the Special Counsel is correct that the trajectory of these matters potentially remains in flux, the schedules as they currently stand overlap substantially with the deadlines in this case, presenting additional challenges to ensuring Defendant Trump has adequate time to prepare for trial and to assist in his defense,” Cannon wrote.
Trump is accused of hiding papers related to national security at his Mar-a-Lago estate after leaving office and then lying to federal officials who sought the files. He has pled not guilty to all 37 counts against him.
Former president's valet Walt Nauta has also pleaded not guilty to six counts as a co-conspirator after he was accused of helping Trump move some of the boxes containing the classified documents between a bedroom, bathroom, ballroom, and basement storage room to hide them from federal authorities and the ex-president's own lawyers.
Carlos De Oliveira, a second employee at the Palm Beach resort, was also included in the superseding indictment and has pleaded not guilty to three counts accusing the former president of directing the destruction of security camera footage.
The trial is scheduled to commence in May of next year.