Trump co-defendants in classified docs case denied motion to dismiss charges

 April 19, 2024

Some of the co-defendants in former President Donald Trump's classified documents case were denied the removal of certain charges by a federal judge this week. 

According to CNN, Judge Aileen Cannon rejected motions filed by Walt Nauta and Carlos De Oliveira to have obstruction charges tossed.

The two men work for Trump - Nauta as the former president's valet, and De Oliveira as a property manager at Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida.

Both men have pleaded not guilty to all of the charges they face in the prosecution.

What's going on?

Attorneys for the co-defendants argued against the obstruction charges for various reasons.

The outlet noted:

Attorneys for De Oliveira argued that the obstruction charges he faced should be dismissed because he was not aware of the grand jury subpoenas issued for classified documents kept at Mar-a-Lago when he allegedly moved boxes around the resort.

His attorney also argued for a charge related to false statements be dismissed as well, claiming that the FBI's interview was not "clear enough" and allegedly some of the questions asked were not relevant to the investigation.

Cannon didn't buy what the attorneys were arguing, and essentially said that such arguments would be better suited for a grand jury to sort out.

The outlet added Cannon's reply:

The indictment “provides sufficient details” about the allegations against De Oliveira to allow the case to continue, she wrote, and “whatever deficiencies may exist with respect to the manner of questioning during the interview (and any confusion or ambiguity stemming therefrom) is a matter for trial.”

Nauta's attorneys argue

As far as Nauta, Trump's valet, his attorneys argued to Judge Cannon "that ongoing disagreements among judges over the meaning of the word “corruptly” in the obstruction statute made the charges against him unconstitutionally vague."

Nauta faces slightly different charges in that he's on the hook for allegedly helping the former president hide boxes of classified documents from an attorney who was at Mar-a-Lago to collect them for an upcoming grand jury subpoena.

Judge Cannon noted that Nauta's arguments were "worthy of serious consideration, but it does not lead this Court to conclude that dismissal of the obstruction counts is warranted."

The two co-defendants were also denied the opportunity to obtain additional information about the allegations they face.

Only time will tell what a grand jury will decide on the matter.

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