US Court Fixes March 4 For Trial Of Ex-President, Donald Trump Over Attempts To Overturn 2020 Election

The United State Federal Court has fixed March 4, 2023 as the hearing date for the criminal case against former President Donald Trump for interfering with the 2020 presidential election.

It was gathered that the new trial date was fixed on Monday by Judge Chutkan who set aside Trump’s arguments of a two-year delay, Reuters reports.

Recall that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin had previously said he would be flexible on that case if the trial judges agreed.

The trial in Washington, D.C., at a courthouse just feet away from the U.S. Capitol where rioters ran amok on Jan. 6, 2021, takes place late in the 2024 election season – just before Super Tuesday. It adds to Trump’s already crowded legal calendar, which includes charges in New York, Florida, and Fulton County, Georgia.

Trump has pleaded not guilty to charges such as conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct Congress, and conspiracy against rights for allegedly attempting to disenfranchise millions of American voters by overturning the 2020 election and disrupting the peaceful transfer of power.

“Setting a trial date does not depend and should not depend on a defendant’s personal obligations,” the judge said. She said setting a trial date while considering a professional athlete’s schedule would be “inappropriate” and the same would be true in a case involving a former president running to return to the White House.

“I take seriously the defense’s request that Mr. Trump be treated like any other defendant appearing before this court, and I intend to do so,” said the judge, a longtime former public defender.

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Molly Gaston, a special counsel prosecutor, said the Justice Department has already turned over 12.8 million pages of evidence to the defence, including more files overnight. She stated that the special counsel had prepared and distributed a roughly 300-page annotated version of the four-count indictment, outlining the evidence supporting each allegation in the charge sheet.

At this point, discovery is now substantially complete,” Gaston said.

Much of that material consists of duplicate papers or pages the Trump legal team has already seen coming from his political action committee, the National Archives, the Secret Service and the work of the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot, the judge pointed out. Many of the potential 250 witnesses in the case worked closely with Trump, who spent months trying without success to prevent some of his attorneys, top aides and former Vice President Mike Pence from providing grand jury testimony.

“At this point, discovery is now substantially complete,” Gaston said.

Much of that material consists of duplicate papers or pages the Trump legal team has already seen coming from his political action committee, the National Archives, the Secret Service and the work of the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot, the judge pointed out. Many of the potential 250 witnesses in the case worked closely with Trump, who spent months trying without success to prevent some of his attorneys, top aides and former Vice President Mike Pence from providing grand jury testimony.

“This is an overwhelming task,” Trump attorney John Lauro said. “This man’s liberty and life is at stake. He deserves an adequate representation.”

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Lauro said the trial date is “inconsistent” with Trump’s right to due process and the judge said she would note that objection for the record.

Lauro, who was hired about six weeks ago, said he had a “solemn obligation” to protect Trump’s rights, raising his voice.

The judge twice cautioned him to “take the temperature down here.”

“It’s not easy when you have the entire government amassed against you,” Lauro replied. “President Trump stands before you as an innocent man right now.”

Lauro predicted a number of motions he will bring in the coming weeks, including one arguing that the former president should be free from prosecution because he has been indicted for “being President Trump.” Lauro stated that he is planning a move to quash the charge based on selective prosecution because “it benefits these prosecutors’ boss who is running a campaign against President Trump.” He stated that they want to argue that Trump was simply using his First Amendment rights and not breaking any federal conspiracy crimes.

Prosecutor Gaston said the trial should happen as soon as the defense can reasonably be ready, given Trump’s disparaging remarks about prosecutors, witnesses, the judge, and residents of Washington, D.C., which could taint the jury pool.

Earlier Monday, Trump called special counsel Jack Smith “deranged” and accused Biden White House officials of being “fascist thugs.”

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