Trump would waive the quick electoral trial in Georgia in break with the co-defendant | ET REALITY


Former US President Donald Trump speaks to the media at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport after turning himself in at the Fulton County Jail on August 24, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia.

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Donald Trump offered on Wednesday to “trade” his right to a speedy trial for his electoral conspiracy in Georgia case for a ruling by an Atlanta judge that would have the former president tried separately from 18 other defendants.

Trump’s co-defendant, Mark Meadows, who was his White House chief of staff, shortly afterward made an identical offer, forgoing a quick trial in exchange for his own case being tried separately.

Four other defendants (Shawn Still, Harrison Floyd, Jenna Ellis and David Shafer) quickly followed with their own contingent waiver offers.

The filings came a day after the Fulton County District Attorney’s office again argued that all 19 defendants in the case should be tried together.

But prosecutors in that same filing also urged the judge to require defendants who want their cases separated to first waive their rights to a speedy trial to avoid a “logistical quagmire.”

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee has not yet ruled on the compensation requests filed by Trump, Meadows and 10 other defendants. It is by no means clear that McAfee would award damages based on the speedy trial exemption.

Trump and the other defendants have the absolute right to a speedy trial in the case.

Two co-defendants, attorneys Kenneth Chesebro and Sidney Powell, asked for speedy trials and were granted them by the end of October.

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In late August, Trump asked McAfee to separate his trial from that of the other defendants, who along with him are accused of conspiring in an illegal effort, which failed, to overturn his loss to President Joe Biden in the election. of 2020 in Georgia.

In his filing Wednesday, Trump attorney Steven Sadow wrote: “President Trump hereby affirmatively waives his procedural right to file a speedy trial lawsuit under OCGA ยง 17-7-170 in exchange for damages.” which he previously requested in his motion to sever the filed complaint. on August 31, 2023.”

A day earlier, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis’ office said, “The State maintains that all defendants will be tried together.”

That filing warned that if McAfee dismisses the case, a potential “cascade of additional speedy trial demands arising from the separate defendants” before the Nov. 5 deadline could force the court to hold three or more trials in the next weeks.

Prosecutors said that “holding three or more high-profile simultaneous trials would create a number of security problems” and place a burden on witnesses and victims, who would be “forced to testify three or more times about the same set.” of facts in the same case”.

That filing also said that having McAfee require “such a waiver as a condition of dismissing any defendant who has sought damages on the basis that he cannot be ready for trial by the end of October would avoid the logistical quagmire described above, the inevitable damage to victims and witnesses, and the risk of cunning”.

“Defendants who wish to be separated must make this showing before the Court removes them from trial, and separating these defendants before the defendants make this showing would be premature,” prosecutors wrote.

“Furthermore, any defendant seeking compensation for not being ready for trial by October 23, 2023 must inform this Court on the record when he or she expects to be ready for trial.”

Documents filed Wednesday by Trump and Meadows do not say when they expect to be ready for trial.

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