(CN) — A federal judge ruled former President Donald Trump’s trial on charges he mishandled classified documents at his Florida resort will proceed in May.
U.S. District Court Judge Aileen Cannon observed in Friday’s order that the “exceedingly voluminous” evidence and complex rules for handling classified materials offered unique challenges for defense attorneys, but she declined to push the trial date.
Cannon, a Trump appointee, instead delayed the deadlines for motions and discovery. She also scheduled a hearing for March 1 to revisit the issue.
The ruling stymied efforts by Trump’s attorneys to push the trial until mid-November 2024 — after next year’s presidential election. They argued federal prosecutors delayed in turning over evidence, including 1.3 million pages of unclassified documents and 60 terabytes of security footage, which hampered preparation.
The former president is also expected to appear in March at two separate criminal trials in New York and Washington, attorneys argued.
Prosecutors have accused defense attorneys of misleading the court to secure a delay. They acknowledged difficulties in accessing classified materials, which must be reviewed in a secure facility, but most of the evidence was provided months ago.
Trump was indicted in June on accusations he mishandled classified documents he kept stored at Mar-a-Lago after leaving the White House. His employees, Carlos De Oliveira and Walt Nauta, are accused of helping Trump hide the records to thwart their return to federal authorities.
The two-week trial is scheduled to begin May 20 in Fort Pierce, Florida.Follow @SteveGarrisonPC
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