MIAMI — Lawyers for former President Donald Trump are asking a judge to postpone his criminal trial without setting a new date as he stands accused of illegally hoarding classified documents at his Florida estate.
In a late Monday filing, Trump's defense attorneys said the case was "extraordinary," with a large volume of documents and footage to be reviewed as the former president leads the race for the Republican nomination to unseat President Joe Biden. They cited challenges to select jurors and concerns about whether he would get a fair trial if scheduled before the November 2024 election.
"The government’s request to begin a trial of this magnitude within six months of indictment is unreasonable, telling, and would result in a miscarriage of justice," said the document filed by Chris Kise, one of Trump's lawyers.
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The Justice Department had previously proposed to set the trial date for Dec. 11 in Fort Pierce.
WPTV spoke with long-time Florida attorney Steve Maggi about the case Tuesday and the move to request a delayed start date for the trial.
"I think we will see a delay," he said. "I think the judge will find some legal reasoning to justify it. But there's also the conspiracy part of this right that the judge, Aileen Cannon, is an appointee of President Trump and so that's where our political system influences our judicial system."
Earlier Monday, Trump's lawyers filed paperwork saying they agreed with federal prosecutors to delay to next week a pretrial hearing that specifically discusses how classified information is handled in court.
The hearing to discuss the Classified Information Procedures Act had previously been set for Friday. But an attorney for Trump's valet Walt Nauta, who was charged alongside the former president, said he has another bench trial this week in Washington preventing him from appearing Friday in South Florida.
The attorneys said in their filing that they can appear at the pretrial conference to go over the 1980 law on July 18, adding they had also checked with U.S. attorneys on moving the date.
Cannon agreed to the new date Tuesday.
Trump and Nauta were charged in a 38-count indictment with conspiring to hide classified documents at Mar-a-Lago from federal investigators. Both men have pleaded not guilty.
Trump has denied any wrongdoing and has slammed the prosecution as an effort to hurt his bid to reclaim the White House in 2024.