Jack Smith is asking to gag Trump again, this time to protect law enforcement

Special counsel Jack Smith has asked the judge handling former President Donald Trump’s classified documents case to gag him again.

This time Smith wants Judge Aileen Cannon to block Trump from making statements that would allegedly pose a danger to law enforcement officers.

“The Government moves to modify defendant Donald J. Trump’s conditions of release, to make clear that he may not make statements that pose a significant, imminent, and foreseeable danger to law enforcement agents participating in the investigation and prosecution of this case,” Smith’s Friday filing reads, according to ABC News.

“The government’s request is necessary because of several intentionally false and inflammatory statements recently made by Trump that distort the circumstances under which the Federal Bureau of Investigation planned and executed the search warrant at Mar-a-Lago,” it continues.

The filing is essentially a response to Trump’s response to a bombshell report earlier in the week that President Joe Biden had authorized the use of “deadly force” during the FBI’s infamous raid of the former president’s Mar-a-Lago resort.

Trump’s response consisted of him accusing the current president of being “locked & loaded ready to take me out & put my family in danger”:

Smith didn’t care for this response.

“Those statements create a grossly misleading impression about the intentions and conduct of federal law enforcement agents—falsely suggesting that they were complicit in a plot to assassinate him—and expose those agents, some of whom will be witnesses at trial, to the risk of threats, violence, and harassment,” his filing continues.

“Trump… has grossly distorted… standard practices by mischaracterizing them as a plan to kill him, his family, and U.S. Secret Service agents. Those deceptive and inflammatory assertions irresponsibly put a target on the backs of the FBI agents involved in this case, as Trump well knows,” the filing adds.

Smith goes on to claim that the FBI took comprehensive steps to ensure that there was no escalation and thus no need for force during the raid.

“As Trump is well aware, the FBI took extraordinary care to execute the search warrant unobtrusively and without needless confrontation,” the filing reads.

The FBI accomplished this by scheduling the raid at “a time when [Trump] and his family would be away,” coordinating with Trump’s attorney and Mar-a-Lago staff, and planning for contingencies.

To bolster his supposed point about the threat faced by law enforcement, Smith then pointed to a recent attack on an FBI field office in Cincinnati by an alleged Trump supporter.

Smith also claimed in the filing that Trump’s lawyers mischaracterized the FBI’s “Use of Deadly Force” policy.

“Law enforcement officers of the Department of Justice may use deadly force when necessary,” they reportedly said while supposedly reading the policy aloud.

There was just a problem.

“Law enforcement officers of the Department of Justice may use deadly force only when necessary,” is what the policy actually says.

All this comes a few weeks after House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan launched an investigation into Smith over his handling of the classified documents case.

The Ohio Republican announced the new investigation into Smith after a court filing appeared to admit that the documents seized by the FBI from Mar-A-Lago had been manipulated in some way.

In a court filing, prosecutors admitted that “there are some boxes where the order of items within that box is not the same as in the associated scans,” referring to the materials seized at Trump’s Florida home in 2022. This came after prosecutors assured the court that the documents were “in their original, intact form as seized.”

“The Government acknowledges that this is inconsistent with what Government counsel previously understood and represented to the Court,” a footnote in the filing read.

“This acknowledgement presents grave concerns about the Department’s commitment to impartial justice, whether the Special Counsel’s Office misled a federal court, whether the Special Counsel’s Office strenuously upheld the ‘highest professional standards’ of the Department of Justice,” Jordan wrote in a letter to the DOJ’s Office of Professional Responsibility.

“Accordingly, we write to ask what steps the Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility is undertaking to examine these facts and hold accountable attorneys who violated the standards of professional conduct,” he added.

“To that end, legal experts believe that Special Counsel Smith’s filing “essentially is an admission of witness tampering.’ The admission, unfortunately, reflects a broader trend of attorneys on Special Counsel Smith’s team violating ethical norms in persecution of President Trump,” he concluded.

Vivek Saxena

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