Two top lawyers resign from Trump’s defence team following indictment

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10th June 2023 – (Washington) Donald Trump’s legal team suffered a major blow on Friday when two of his top lawyers, Jim Trusty and John Rowley, abruptly resigned from his defense team. This came just hours after news that Trump and his close aide, Walt Nauta, were indicted on charges related to their handling of classified documents. Trusty and Rowley had been leading Trump’s Washington D.C.-based legal team for months and were frequently seen at the federal courthouse.

The resignations signal a significant setback for Trump as he prepares to face charges being investigated and prosecuted by special counsel Jack Smith. Smith is investigating both the documents matter and efforts by Trump to subvert the 2020 election.

Shortly after the resignations, Trump confirmed that Nauta, a Navy veteran who served as the former president’s personal aide, had also been indicted by federal prosecutors. Nauta was a ubiquitous presence during Trump’s post-White House days.

Replacing Trusty and Rowley, Trump said that Todd Blanche, an attorney he recently retained to help fight unrelated felony charges brought by Manhattan district attorney Alvin Bragg in April, would lead his legal team, along with a firm to be named later. Trump and his team have expressed confidence in Blanche, who is expected to play a more elevated, central role.

However, the current changes deprive Trump of some of his most seasoned legal hands at the most perilous moment of his legal travails. The recent departure of a third lawyer, Tim Parlatore, has also added to Trump’s woes. Parlatore had helped guide Trump’s defence in the documents matter but abruptly quit citing internal disagreement, particularly with longtime Trump hand Boris Epshteyn.

The case against Trump appears to have been initially directed toward U.S. District Court Judge Aileen Cannon, who handled his lawsuit last year after the FBI raided his Mar-a-Lago estate. Cannon, a Trump appointee to the federal bench, has made unorthodox rulings sharply in Trump’s favour that were ultimately reversed by a panel of an appeals court. Two people close to Trump did not dispute that Cannon would potentially oversee the case and said they were pleased by the possibility.