Former President Donald Trump has prevailed in his efforts to have a special master review documents seized in the unprecedented raid on his Mar-a-Lago home, offering some hope that law and order still prevail in America.
U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon — a Trump appointee — has granted the request, “temporarily stopping federal prosecutors from using those documents in their investigation into obstruction and mishandling of government secrets,” NPR reported.
While the decision was expected, dropping it on Labor Day caught a lot of people off guard.
Cannon, who unsealed on Friday a list of items the FBI seized from Trump’s home, cited in Monday’s order the need to ensure “the appearance of fairness and integrity under the extraordinary circumstances presented,” according to NPR.
This coming after Cannon said last week that she was inclined to grant Trump’s request at a hearing where the Justice Department laid out its argument against the special master. The DOJ also indicated that it would appeal a ruling in Trump’s favor.
More from NPR:
A special master is an independent third party, typically an attorney, appointed by the judge to review materials seized in a search for anything that may be protected from investigation by attorney-client privilege, or executive privilege as Trump is claiming.
The judge also ordered the government to cease any review or use of the materials for its criminal investigation until the special master review is completed, but Cannon said the intelligence community may continue its review to determine potential national security risks from the classified material being kept outside of a secure government facility.
Both parties have until this Friday, Sept. 9 to submit a joint filing with a list of proposed candidates to be named special master. They were also instructed to include “a detailed proposal to establish the duties and limits of the special master, as well as a schedule for the review and compensation,” the publicly funded nonprofit media organization reported.
NPR also cited “legal experts” saying that requesting a special master “is another attempt from Trump to undermine the work of the Justice Department and question their integrity.”
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