Former President Donald Trump and an aide pleaded not guilty Thursday to additional charges brought against them in the classified documents case.
Both Trump and Walt Nauta, a valet for Trump at Mar-a-Lago, pleaded not guilty to charges alleging they plotted to obstruct justice by “conceal[ing] information from the FBI and grand jury,” according to the superseding indictment. While Trump did not show up to the 10-minute hearing before U.S. Magistrate Judge Shaniek Mills Maynard, his lawyer, Todd Blanche, entered a not-guilty plea for the former president.
Fmr Pres. Trump and longtime aide Walt Nauta both pleaded not guilty to new charges brought by special counsel Jack Smith in the classified documents probe.
— Stephanie Myers (@_StephanieMyers) August 10, 2023
An updated indictment added additional charges accusing Trump of seeking to delete security footage at Mar-a-Lago and also charged another aide, Carlos De Oliveira. The two new charges include two counts of obstruction, and one count of “unlawful retention of National Defense Information,” according to the indictment.
The former president denied deleting any security footage in a Truth Social post July 30.
“MAR-A-LAGO SECURITY TAPES WERE NOT DELETED. THEY WERE VOLUNTARILY HANDED OVER TO THE THUGS, HEADED UP BY DERANGED JACK SMITH,” Trump wrote.
Trump signed a form indicating he would plead not guilty earlier in August, The New York Times reported.
Department of Justice (DOJ) Special Counsel Jack Smith brought forth the charges in the second indictment handed to Trump on June 8. Nauta is accused of misleading investigators who attempted to retrieve the classified documents stored in several boxes inside Mar-a-Lago. (RELATED: Trump Says Timing Of Third Indictment Is Attempt To Quash ‘Bad Publicity’ Of Hunter Allegations)
The FBI raided Trump’s Florida residence in August 2022 after the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) had not received documents it requested Trump hand over. The agents seized 102 documents from Mar-a-Lago and retrieved around 20 boxes of binders, a handwritten note and the executive grant of clemency for Roger Stone, information about the president of France and binders of photographs.
A federal grand jury handed down a 37-count indictment against Trump, including 31 counts of allegedly violating the Espionage Act. The former president is currently charged with two additional indictments related to an alleged $130,000 hush money payment to former porn star Stormy Daniels and another connected to allegations that he conspired to overturn the 2020 presidential election results.