Crime & Justice

Arraignment of Trump aide on classified docs charges postponed until July 6

Miami, Jun 27 (EFE).- The arraignment of a Donald Trump aide being charged alongside the ex-president for allegedly mishandling classified documents was postponed on Tuesday for the second time in two weeks.

Chief Magistrate Judge Edwin Torres has rescheduled the hearing for July 6.

Walt Nauta, 41, was unable to arrive for the hearing at the Wilkie D. Ferguson Jr. federal courthouse in downtown Miami because his flight to Florida was canceled due to inclement weather.

He also has yet to retain an attorney who is licensed to practice law in the Southern District of Florida, a lack of local counsel that prevented him from entering a plea when Trump was arraigned on June 13.

Nauta, who was the White House military valet during Trump’s 2017-2021 presidency and later served as his butler, was charged in a 38-count indictment related to more than 100 classified documents recovered from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in August 2022, including 31 counts of willful retention of national defense information.

Prosecutors allege that Nauta helped move boxes containing the sensitive documents Trump had kept after leaving the White House, taking them from a storage room at the Mar-a-Lago club to Trump’s residence after federal investigators had issued a subpoena to retrieve them.

The co-defendant faces one more count than Trump because he also is charged with having lied to the FBI when asked where the boxes were and whether they had been moved.

Like Trump, Nauta is expected to plead not guilty to all of the charges. Both face the prospect of years in federal prison.

Unlike at Trump’s arraignment on June 13, very few spectators arrived at the courthouse for Nauta’s scheduled hearing on Tuesday. A large group of reporters, however, was on hand for the proceedings.

Nauta, whose full name is Waltine Torre Nauta Jr., was born on the US territory of Guam and enlisted in the US Navy in 2001.

A jury trial in Trump’s documents case is scheduled to begin on Aug. 14, although prosecutors from special counsel Jack Smith’s office have asked that the start date be delayed until Dec. 1. EFE


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