BREAKING NEWS: Judge Aileen Cannon denied Special Counsel Jack Smith’s request to seal government filings in the case against former president Donald Trump.
Judge Cannon of the Southern District of Florida, who presides over the case stemming from a Miami grand jury’s June indictment of Trump, has denied the Department of Justice’s request for sealed filings, striking two from the record. In addition, Judge Cannon requested further information from prosecutors regarding the continued use of an out-of-state grand jury to investigate the case.
Trump is accused of 37 counts, including willful retention of national defense information, conspiracy to obstruct justice and making false statements. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Cannon also won’t tolerate DOJs nonstop requests for secrecy. She already denied a govt motion asking to keep names of 80+ witnesses under seal. pic.twitter.com/3BIZLcNOUe
— Julie Kelly 🇺🇸 (@julie_kelly2) August 7, 2023
Response to the breaking news on Twitter was mixed. Many expressed support for the judge’s decision while others called her “a hack.”
In denying the DOJ’s request, Cannon wrote in the brief:
“The Special Counsel states in conclusory terms that the supplement should be sealed from public view ‘to comport with grand jury secrecy,’ but the motion for leave and the supplement plainly fail to satisfy the burden of establishing a sufficient legal or factual basis to warrant sealing the motion and supplement.”
“Among other topics as raised in the Motion, the response shall address the legal propriety of using an out-of-district grand jury proceeding to continue to investigate and/or to seek post-indictment hearings on matters pertinent to the instant indicted matter in this district,” she continued in the brief.
While much of the Mar-a-Lago docs case is being handled out of Cannon’s South Florida district, a portion of the grand jury work ahead of Trump’s indictment was done by a D.C. grand jury, which Cannon appeared perplexed by.
This latest action in the case comes nine months before the scheduled trial, which is set for May 20, 2024, amid the Republican presidential primaries.
Many supporters of the former president believe that he is unlikely to receive a fair trial in Washington, DC with presiding judge, Tanya Chutkin, an Obama appointee, who is notorious for being merciless with January 6th cases and who also donated to former president Barack Obama’s campaign.