FORT PIERCE, Fla. — A federal judge on Friday set a jury trial date of May 20, 2024 for former President Donald Trump in a case charging him with illegally retaining hundreds of classified documents.
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida Judge Aileen Cannon issued a written order, saying the trial will start at 9:30 a.m. on that date.
Trump and co-defendant Walt Nauta have pleaded not guilty to a 38-count indictment that accuses them of conspiring to hide classified documents from Justice Department investigators that were taken from the White House to Mar-a-Lago at the end of Trump's time in office in January 2021.
The May 20, 2024, trial date is a compromise between a request from prosecutors to set the trial for this December and a request from defense lawyers to schedule it after the 2024 presidential election.
If the date holds, it would follow close on the heels of a separate New York trial for Trump on dozens of state charges of falsifying business records. It also means the trial will not start until deep into the presidential nominating calendar and probably well after the Republican nominee is clear — though before that person is officially nominated at the Republican National Convention.
Trump could yet face additional trials in the coming year. He revealed this week that he had received a letter informing him that he was a target of a separate Justice Department investigation into efforts to undo the 2020 presidential election, and prosecutors in Georgia plan to announce charging decisions within weeks in an investigation into attempts by Trump and his allies to subvert the vote there.
Trump's campaign released the following statement regarding the May 2024 trial date:
“Today’s order by Judge Cannon is a major setback to the DOJ’s crusade to deny President Trump a fair legal process. The extensive schedule allows President Trump and his legal team to continue fighting this empty hoax. Crooked Joe Biden is losing and attempting to use his weaponized DOJ against his top political rival--a disgraceful and un-American abuse of power. Crooked Joe will fail and President Trump will win back the White House for the American people.”