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Trump’s legal team tangles with the special master he requested

  • Trump’s lawyers are hitting a roadblock with special counsel Raymond Dearie.
  • Dearie asked Trump’s team to turn over specific information about the files he claims to have declassified.
  • His team now argues that would undermine any defense of Trump against further charges.

Former President Donald Trump’s legal team tangles with Raymond Dearie, the special master Trump has requested.

At the center of the most recent issue is a set of top-secret documents that were seized during the August 8 FBI raid on Mar-a-Lago. Trump claims he had all declassified the FBI found. Dearie asks Trump’s team to pass on specific information on whether or not the files have been declassified.

In a file of September 19Trump’s team appealed Dearie’s request to avoid revealing details of the top-secret documents.

Trump’s attorneys argue there is a ‘time and place’ for Trump to ‘disclose specific information regarding declassification to the Court and the government,’ according to the filing.. They ask Dearie not to ask her team to hand over information about whether any documents have been declassified or not.

Trump’s attorneys say the release of these documents would require Trump to “fully and specifically disclose a defense” that he may try to mount to fend off any “further impeachment.”

Lawyers for the former president also question the timelines suggested by Dearie, arguing that his draft plan “compresses the entire inspection and labeling process to be completed by October 7, 2022.”

“We respectfully suggest that all timelines may be extended to allow for a more realistic and complete assessment of the areas of disagreement,” Trump’s attorneys wrote in the filing.

Dearie has until November 30 to complete the review of documents seized by the FBI. During its Mar-a-Lago raid, the agency seized 11 sets of classified documents, including some marked “top secret”. The DOJ is investigating whether Trump violated any of three federal laws — including the Espionage Act — by keeping the documents at his Florida residence.

Last week, the DOJ appealed Judge Aileen Cannon’s initial decision to appoint a special master on the case. The DOJ has also requested a partial stay on Cannon’s decision around classified documents as he prepares a formal appeal, which could see the case drag on and go all the way to the Supreme Court.

Dearie, 78, is a former Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. He was appointed, at Trump’s request, as a neutral third-party investigator in Trump’s legal tussle with the FBI over documents seized during the agency’s raid on Mar-a-Lago. Trump foots the bill for the special master’s appointment fee.

Trump is represented by counsel at Ifrah Law – attorneys James Trusty, Christopher Kise, Lindsey Halligan and Evan Corcoran.