A federal court of appeals has declined entreaties from Trump’s legal team to stop further testimony for the Justice Department from Evan Corcoran, himself a former federal prosecutor who has been helping lead Donald’s legal representation in the ongoing dispute over classified documents Trump harbored after leaving office.
D.C. Judge Beryl Howell had ruled for Corcoran to give testimony and for Justice Department investigators to be provided a series of evidentiary materials originating with the lawyer, like transcriptions of audio recordings. Although the concept of attorney-client privilege would ordinarily shield many aspects of an attorney’s relationship with their client from investigative scrutiny, Howell found there was enough of a showing pointing to a possibly provable crime to get around that hurdle. The tentative case from investigators is evidently that Trump intentionally misrepresented the facts to his personal legal team, as revealed in available details highlighted by ABC. The entire process of appealing was finished within a week, with Howell’s conclusions broadly upheld.
Throughout the course of the probe, some of the possible crimes that have been at issue include mishandling the protected documents and obstructing the government’s investigation — the latter of which, a serious possibility, is among the distinguishing factors between the Trump case and the discovery of classified documents at locations associated with Biden.
ABC had some details about the areas of inquiry in which the Justice Department was interested with Corcoran. That list includes details about potential awareness from Trump and others about the signed attestation provided to the federal government in the middle of last year claiming everything covered by a subpoena for the classified records Trump had was getting returned. Corcoran has already been identified as having drafted the claim, and it was signed, with qualifications attached, by fellow Trump lawyer Christina Bobb, but it could be shown others — particularly Trump — also had a role.
Also at issue is how Corcoran got his understanding of the location of the classified docs stored at Mar-a-Lago, and, among a total of some half a dozen topics for Corcoran’s new testimony that was set to take place this week, Justice Department investigators also wanted to know about the contents of a conversation Corcoran had with the ex-president on the day that the Trump Organization was hit with a subpoena for surveillance footage that would depict relevant areas at Mar-a-Lago. The investigation into the classified documents found with Trump is one of the probes taken over by Special Counsel Jack Smith, who can bring criminal charges under the authorities provided.