Trump explores federal court option for Georgia election case

15:52 07.09.2023

In a significant development, former President Donald Trump's attorney informed the local court on Thursday that Trump may seek to move his criminal case in Fulton County, Georgia, to federal court. This move comes as Trump and 18 other defendants were charged in August with acting as a "criminal enterprise" in an alleged effort to overturn Georgia's 2020 election results.

Trump's co-defendants, including former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, have already made similar requests, arguing that the case involves acts committed in their capacities as federal officials or on behalf of a federal official - Trump himself. All 19 defendants have entered not guilty pleas and maintain their innocence.

The potential transfer of the case to federal court raises interesting implications. Trump and his co-defendants believe that by moving the trial, they would have a better chance of securing a politically diverse jury pool, as potential jurors would be drawn from the suburbs and exurbs beyond Atlanta, where Democrats are less heavily represented.

Trump, a Republican, has expressed his discontent with the prosecutors in Atlanta and New York City, accusing them of targeting him to appease their political bases. In the New York case, Trump faces 34 counts of felony falsification of business records related to an alleged "hush money" payment made just before the 2016 election. However, his attorneys' attempt to move that case to federal court was rejected. U.S. District Judge Alvin Hellerstein ruled that the payments made to a former Trump attorney were not tied to Trump's service as president.

It is important to note that even if the cases are moved to federal court, the defendants would still be tried under state laws. This means that they would not be eligible for presidential pardons, which only apply to federal crimes. Nonetheless, Trump is also facing two federal cases, where he has entered not guilty pleas. Special counsel Jack Smith has charged Trump with 40 felony counts related to the "willful retention" of national security information after leaving the White House, as well as four felony counts related to alleged efforts to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power after the 2020 election.

The decision on whether to transfer the Georgia case to federal court now lies with a judge, who will consider Trump's arguments for immunity from prosecution based on his official duties as president. This move could potentially reshape the dynamics of the trial, as Trump's legal team navigates the intricacies of the legal system to ensure the best possible outcome for their client.

/ Thursday, September 7, 2023, 3:52 PM /

themes:  Donald Trump  New York City  Georgia  New York (state)

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