The two remaining co-defendants, Kenneth Chesebro and Sidney Powell, have requested speedy trials and they are scheduled to begin in October. The hearing of his case will be held this Thursday.
McAfee’s order halted efforts by Fulton District Attorney Fani Willis to prosecute the 19 defendants in October.
“Fulton County prosecutor Fani Willis’ politically motivated and unfair attempt to deny President Trump due process of law by arguing that severances should not be granted has been struck down in court,” a spokesperson said. Trump said. “Willis’ unfair rush to judgment to please his radical political base backfires.”
Although McAfee has not set a trial date for Trump and 16 of his co-defendants, the schedule he outlined in a court order Thursday means they won’t go to trial before December at the earliest.
The new schedule established by the judge shows that he wants to start resolving the disputes before the trial of the group of 17 defendants at the end of the year. The judge ordered the presentation of evidence to begin on October 6.
However, no timetable has been set for the trial of the 17 defendants or for resolving disputes over what evidence can be presented to the jury. McAfee ordered other types of pretrial motions to be filed by Dec. 1, but did not schedule a hearing on those motions.
At the pace set by McAfee, federal courts will have time to respond to efforts by some defendants in the case to move their trials to federal courts.
Tight schedule for Trump’s 2024 trial
The Georgia election subversion case is one of four criminal cases pending against the former president, who is also involved in a number of civil matters that also clutter his legal calendar as the 2024 election cycle progresses. fast.
McAfee’s order confirms that Trump’s prosecution in Fulton County will not go to trial this year, and raises the possibility that it will compete with trials set for the first half of next year in three other criminal cases. against Trump.
One such case is the case of federal election subversion brought by special counsel Jack Smith against Trump in Washington, which is now being tried in early March. Smith took a more aggressive approach than Willis against Trump, accusing him alone, without co-defendants.
The trial date for Manhattan prosecutors’ indictment of Trump over an alleged hush money scheme in his 2016 campaign appears to be moving forward. Also originally scheduled for March 2024, the judge in that case signaled this week that he was open to moving the start date to accommodate Trump’s increasingly complicated legal schedule.
The special counsel’s case alleging Trump mishandled classified documents is set for a trial to begin in federal court in Florida in late May.
While he juggled these criminal charges, as well as a New York civil attorney fraud case against his company and family, which went to trial in October, and a defamation case involving a woman who accusing him of sexual assault, Trump is preparing for the 2024 presidential elections, where he is the leading contender for the nomination of the Republican Party.
Trump accused prosecutors of attempting to try him in the coming months as an attempt to interfere in the politics of the 2024 election. They responded that the public has its own interest in seeing him and his co-defendants. that were quickly brought to trial, and that there are no legitimate legal reasons to delay the trials of their cases until after the 2024 elections.
Efforts to contain Georgia’s growing caseload
Willis argued that splitting the case “into multiple lengthy trials would create a significant burden on the judicial resources of the Fulton County Supreme Court.”
McAfee’s new order does not indicate whether he is considering further dividing the 17 defendants who will not be tried in October into smaller groups, but it is a suggestion that some of the defendants have already been raised.
“Three or more simultaneous high-level trials will create a series of security problems and place an unavoidable burden on witnesses and victims, who will be forced to testify three or more about same set of facts in the same case,” prosecutors from Willis’ office said in a brief filed this week.
In addition, several of the defendants in the Georgia case have parallel proceedings initiated in federal courts. Those defendants, who include former White House Secretary of State Mark Meadows, former Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark and three defendants allegedly involved in the fraudulent voter scheme, are seeking to have the Fulton County charges against them moved to federal court, where they will seek immunity under the protections granted to US government officials in certain circumstances. If any of the petitions are successful, it’s unclear what the rest of Willis’ case will mean.
Meadows will withdraw his request for an emergency appellate injunction that would have stopped the state prosecution against him in the Georgia election subversion case.
Meadows will continue to fight in federal court to remove the case from state court. Since he no longer faces the possibility of an October trial on the Fulton County charge, Meadows said there is plenty of time to resolve the dispute in federal court.
In a new filing with the 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals, which is scheduled to hear oral arguments on the emergency request this Friday morning, Meadows’ attorneys noted that McAfee clarified Thursday morning that the Meadows’ state case will not be put on a fast track to go to trial next month.