Special counsel probing classified documents seeks to question Trump attorney, source says
Special counsel Jack Smith, who Investigating The handling of classified documents by former President Donald Trump is increasing pressure on one of Trump’s lawyers to testify before a grand jury, a person familiar with the matter told CBS News on Thursday.
Prosecutors argue they need to know more about an alleged June 24, 2022 call between Trump and his lawyer Evan Corcoran. At the time, investigators were trying to secure documents at Trump’s home and video surveillance tapes from Mar-a-Lago.
ABC News First reported that investigators were trying to question Corcoran.
A person familiar with the investigation told CBS News that prosecutors want to know what Trump may have said during the alleged conversation, and whether he gave any orders to Corcoran about how to handle the subpoenas.
The chief judge overseeing the case is expected to decide in the coming days whether Corcoran will be forced to testify about the call.
Corcoran has appeared before a grand jury, but so far has refused to answer questions about his conversations with Trump, claiming attorney-client privilege.
Prosecutors are now seeking to use the “criminal fraud exception” to compel Corcoran to testify about his client, Trump, and the former president’s conduct while Mar-a-Lago was involved. The surveillance footage was ordered to be produced to investigators.
Under the “criminal fraud exception,” the attorney-client privilege does not apply if the communication is in furtherance of an illegal activity.
Important questions remain about how Trump responded to federal document requests and what he told his lawyers before and after the FBI. Searched first Mar-a-Lago in August, according to another person close to the investigation.
Smith was appointed special counsel in November to oversee the Justice Department’s criminal investigation into Trump, including his handling of sensitive government documents and possible obstruction of efforts to retrieve them, as well as interference in the 2020 election. Efforts are involved.
Trump, who has denied wrongdoing, has not been charged.
Corcoran was not available for comment when reached by CBS News.
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