In a court in Florida, a court session is taking place regarding the charges brought against former President Donald Trump for keeping classified documents, after he left the White House in January 2021. The session is taking place behind closed doors. The former President is taking part in it voluntarily.
Trump faces dozens of criminal charges for keeping classified "top secret" documents at his Mar-a-Lago home, as well as obstructing authorities' efforts to retrieve the documents. The judge is expected to hear arguments first from defense attorneys and later from federal prosecutors, but the parties will appear in court separately, not in each other's presence. The media announce that the session will last several hours. The trial date for this case is set for May 20.
Last week, former President Donald Trump said that special counsel Jack Smith should immediately drop the charges against him, referring to the decision by another special counsel, Robert Hur, who decided not to bring criminal charges against President Joe Biden, who took classified documents with him when he left the post of Vice President in 2017.
But although the two cases have similarities, they also have important differences. The White House said Biden's lawyers found a small number of classified documents and turned them over. Trump resisted handing over the documents until the FBI raided his Mar-a Lago compound in 2022, where they found about 100 classified documents.
Today's hearing in the Florida court is one of those that Mr. Trump is attending voluntarily, without having to be present. Trump did the same thing in Washington, in another case against him, which is on appeal, while sending the message to supporters that he will face all 4 criminal cases in his charge, while campaigning to be re-elected president ./VOA