Trump slams special counsel Jack Smith after judge grants him communications from his attorney
Jack Smith, Donald Trump (Smith photo by Robin Van Lonkhuijsen for AFP/ Trump by Saul Loeb for AFP)

Former President Donald Trump reacted with rage to the news that special counsel Jack Smith invoked the "crime-fraud" exception to attorney-client privilege to get a judge to grant him access to communications he had with lawyer Evan Corcoran, reported POLITICO on Tuesday.

"Trump’s 2024 presidential campaign issued a statement Tuesday attacking special counsel Jack Smith and the judge who issued the sealed ruling, Beryl Howell," reported Josh Gerstein and Kyle Cheney. "The statement followed increasingly detailed news reports about Howell’s determination that Corcoran could be forced to testify and turn over related documents because prosecutors had shown sufficient evidence of an alleged effort to mislead investigators."

"'Prosecutors only attack lawyers when they have no case whatsoever,' the Trump campaign statement said, arguing that an ABC News report and other anonymously sourced stories about the still-sealed decision are based on illegal disclosures. 'These leaks are happening because there is no factual or legal basis or substance to any case against President Trump.'"

The ruling, which was made public earlier today, has been stayed by the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, pending filings from both parties that the appellate judges want to see — however, the report noted, "The appeals court’s order — from Judges Cornelia Pillard, J. Michelle Childs and Florence Pan, all Democratic appointees — doesn’t identify Corcoran or the case at issue but makes clear that the government was on the winning side of the case in Howell’s court."

The classified documents case broke into public consciousness after the FBI executed a search at Mar-a-Lago last year. Trump allegedly held onto hundreds of documents, while falsely claiming they had all been returned to the National Archives. Some of these documents contained extremely sensitive national security secrets, including our knowledge of Iranian missile systems.

All of this is happening as a completely separate case against Trump, involving a $130,000 hush payment he made to adult film star Stormy Daniels to prevent 2016 voters from learning about an alleged affair between the two of them. An indictment in that case is broadly expected to be handed down in the coming days.

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