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Special counsel Jack Smith says Trump’s handling of classified docs far worse than Biden’s: ‘Starkly different’



Special counsel Jack Smith’s team drew a sharp and scathing contrast between former President Donald Trump and President Biden over their respective mishandling of classified material.

In a fiery rebuttal against Trump’s lawyers who accused the special counsel of mounting a “selective” and “vindictive” prosecution and sought to get the case dismissed, Smith’s team argued that Trump’s conduct was unprecedented.

“There has never been a case in American history in which a former official has engaged in conduct remotely similar to Trump’s,” assistant special counsel David Harbach wrote in a blistering 12-page filing Monday.

Jack Smith is overseeing both the 40-count Mar-a-Lago indictment and the four-count 2020 election subversion cases against Donald Trump. Getty Images

“The defendants have not identified anyone who has engaged in a remotely similar suite of willful and deceitful criminal conduct and not been prosecuted,” he added.

The filing came in response to a motion Trump’s team filed last week to dismiss the case following special counsel Robert Hur’s bombshell report on Biden’s handling of classified material released earlier this month.

Trump’s allies have zeroed in on a key line in the 388-page Hur report, “Our investigation uncovered evidence that President Biden willfully retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency when he was a private citizen.”

Hur ultimately declined to charge Biden, citing his co-operation with the investigation, precedent against charging a sitting commander-in-chief, and concerns a jury would see Biden as a “well-meaning elderly man with a poor memory,” which would likely jeopardize efforts to prove willful retention beyond a reasonable doubt.

President Biden bristled at portions of Robert Hur’s report that talked about his age. REUTERS

Harbach emphasized in his filing that Smith’s team has much more robust evidence against Trump, and noted another key contrast between the two cases.

“Trump, unlike Biden, is alleged to have engaged in extensive and repeated efforts to obstruct justice and thwart the return of documents bearing classification markings,” Harbach stressed.

“[Trump] ostensibly agreed to comply with [the National Archive’s] requests but in fact engaged in additional deception, returning only a fraction of the documents in his possession,” the prosecutor recounted.

Donald Trump has called the various indictments against him a “witch hunt.” REUTERS

Harbach also pointed to Trump’s alleged conspiracy with his valet Waltine Nauta and Mar-a-Lago property manager Carlos De Oliveira, both of whom are co-defendants accused of obstructing the investigation.

The prosecutor highlighted an alleged scheme by Trump and the two defendants to move boxes at Mar-a-Lago and then scrub security camera footage.

Trump’s team has contended that the security footage was never deleted.

Ultimately, Harbach argued that Trump’s lawyers failed to prove that the special counsel’s office was “motivated by a discriminatory purpose” in its prosecution of the 45th president.

Robert Hur is expected to testify before the House Judiciary Committee on March 12. AP

Both Smith and Hur were appointed by Attorney General Merrick Garland to oversee the respective Justice Department investigations into Trump and Biden.

Trump is facing 40 criminal counts in the documents case and has pleaded not guilty.

The former president is also facing three additional indictments with an additional 51 criminal counts. Trump has denied wrongdoing across the board.



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