The Superseding Stolen Documents Indictment: Buying Loyalty

While all the journalists were in Prettyman Courthouse in DC, Jack Smith superseded the Florida stolen documents indictment to add Trump employee Carlos De Oliveira — the property manager — to the indictment.

He’s the guy who helped Walt Nauta move boxes around, including loading them to go to Bedminster. Nauta also allegedly asked him to help destroy surveillance footage.

The superseding indictment adds another stolen document count — the Iran document he showed others, which is classified Top Secret — and another obstruction count for attempting to destroy the video footage.

This passage describes how Nauta flew to Florida to attempt to destroy security footage.

This is a key paragraph of the superseding indictment. It shows how Trump uses legal representation to secure loyalty. It’s a fact pattern that crosses both of Trump’s crimes, and may well be in the expected January 6 indictment. It may help to break down the omerta currently protecting Trump.

Just over two weeks after the FBI discovered classified documents in the Storage Room and TRUMP’s office, on August 26, 2022, NAUTA called Trump Employee 5 and said words to the effect of, “someone just wants to make sure Carlos is good.” In response, Trump Employee 5 told NAUTA that DE OLIVEIRA was loyal and that DE OLIVEIRA would not do anything to affect his relationship with TRUMP. That same day, at NAUTA’s request, Trump Employee 5 confirmed in a Signal chat group with NAUTA and the PAC Representative that DE OLIVEIRA was loyal. That same day, TRUMP called DE OLIVEIRA and told DE OLIVEIRA that TRUMP would get DE OLIVEIRA an attorney.

Several uncharged Trump employees have been added to the indictment.

  • Trump Employee 3, who simply passed on the information that Trump wanted to speak to Nauta on the day Trump Organization received a subpoena
  • Trump Employee 4, who is the Director of IT who had control of the surveillance footage; according to some reports, he had received a target letter
  • Trump Employee 5, who is a valet, but from whom DOJ seems to have firsthand testimony

The passage above seems to rely on testimony from Trump Employee 5 and the final exploitation of Walt Nauta’s phone.

It remains to be seen how DOJ learned the specifics of Trump’s conversation with De Oliveira.

And the PAC Representative — to whom Trump showed an Iran document — has been referred to as Susie Wiles. She’s a pivotal person in the alleged misuse of PAC-raised money.

This superseding indictment substantiates the obstruction more. But it also starts chipping away at the dangling of lawyers to obstruct the investigation.

Update: Here’s Jack Smith’s description of the additions.

205 replies
          • obsessed says:

            Oh good – I thought this was literal given the 115 degree temperature and power outtage he was X-ing about the other day. I think I finally understand bmaz: he’s a hardcore sports fan, right down to his handle, and his team is “The Defense”. The Prosecution is the crosstown rivals, who can do no right. It’s like my pal Rodney, who was such a diehard Giants fan that he refused to believe Barry Bonds was taking steroids, even as his head (Barry’s, not Rodney’s) grew to the size of an exceptionally turgid watermelon and his post-27-yrs-old slugging percentage went up by about 600%. It’s the same with every last Trumpista I know. Not a single one has jumped off the Trump wagon. (Hey, at least I’m not whinging).

            • BRUCE F COLE says:

              That makes my lack of a snark tag even worse: I forgot all about the parboiling situation down there.

              • bmaz says:

                Lol, to you and Obsessed, it was a pretty brutal five hours or so (thankfully our computer batteries were pretty charged up, and cell service). It does not take very long here. But, yes, all, including dog, are fine.

      • BRUCE F COLE says:

        Sorry Rayne, forgot the damn “.~” again. I sincerely hope nobody calls 911 for him. I’ll take care of any expenses incurred if that happens.~

  1. Rwood0808 says:

    Is it now just a matter of which accomplice flips first?

    My admiration of Smith keeps growing.

    • Sadra says:

      I just listened to a podcast where the lawyer said that since it’s pretty clear that this case is NEVER going to be heard before the election (now that there are additional defendants and charges) that nobody is going to flip – they are just going to wait for Trump to win the election and get pardoned.
      If he doesn’t win, of course they’ll be knocking each other over to get to the DOJ office in Miami.

      [Welcome to emptywheel. Please choose and use a unique username with a minimum of 8 letters. We are moving to a new minimum standard to support community security. Thanks. /~Rayne]

      • bmaz says:

        No idea what podcast you are referring to, nor what lawyer is speaking. You seem to be new here, but long time readers know I have been bitching about serially stringing out criminal charges. It is not just the state and local yokels, it is Smith too.

        Investigate your case and bring it. Keep it lean, mean and get on with prosecuting it. Seems to be a concept lost on the special counsel. Mr. Smith is now going to go to DC after repeatedly going to SDFL. Where is next? Michigan? Arizona? Maybe down to Georgia, I don’t know.

        But Smith, the special prosecutor, moved for the first continuance instead of making the defense do it, as would normally be the case. He already blew up the time limits once, and by stringing out the charges, he is doing it again. Smith’s indictments really are elegantly done. Credit where truly due. But the bigger strategy I have some issues with.

        [And, by the way, welcome to Emptywheel, and please join in more often]

  2. Thomas_H says:

    Are there legal and professional ethical consequences for lawyers that are used to offer legal advocacy to defendants like Oliviera but are actually protecting the interests of trump?

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Lawyers can be and are paid by a third party, but owe a duty of loyalty to their client, and not to the paying party. The arrangement must be in writing, with an acknowledgment to that effect. They are prohibited from sharing privileged information with anyone without their client’s consent, which should also be in writing. Any sharing should protect client confidentiality, which ordinarily means it’s done under some sort of joint defense arrangement. Just telling Trump something, for example, would void privilege.

      If a lawyer violates those rules, they would be open to sanctions and be liable to their client for harm suffered. But it’s not hard to follow them, if the client consents. Trump’s money often makes that possible. Plus, he has a knack for finding people willing to skirt or violate the rules in service to his orange backside.

      • Leu2500 says:

        Cassidy Hutchinson’s 1st, paid for by Trump lawyer got fired by his firm when the nature of his representation came out

  3. Savage Librarian says:

    Well, dang. I’m on the edge of my seat wondering about hitting a karma jackpot.

  4. harpie says:


    Counts 1-32 Willful Retention of National Defense Information (18U.S.C. 793(e)) TRUMP
    Count 33 Conspiracy to Obstruct Justice (18 U.S.C. 1512(k)) TRUMP, NAUTA, DE OLIVEIRA
    Count 34 Withholding a Document or Record (18 U.S.C. 1512(b)(2)(A), 2) TRUMP, NAUTA
    Count 35 Corruptly Concealing a Document or Record (18 U.S.C. 1512(c)(1), 2) TRUMP, NAUTA
    Count 36 Concealing a Document in a Federal Investigation (18 U.S.C. 1519, 2) TRUMP, NAUTA
    Count 37 Scheme to Conceal (18 U.S.C. 1001 (a)(1), 2) TRUMP, NAUTA
    Count 38 False Statements and Representations (18 U.S.C. 1001 (a)(2), 2) TRUMP
    Count 39 False Statements and Representations (18 U.S.C. 1001 (a)(2)) NAUTA
    Count 40 Altering, Destroying, Mutilating, or Concealing an Object (18 U.S.C. 1512(b)(2)(B), 2) TRUMP, NAUTA, DE OLIVEIRA
    Count 41 Corruptly Altering, Destroying, Mutilating or Concealing a Document, Record, or Other Object (18 U.S.C. 1512(c)(1), 2) TRUMP, NAUTA, DE OLIVEIRA
    Count 42 False Statements and Representations (18 U.S.C. 1001 (a)(2)) DE OLIVEIRA

    • harpie says:

      [pdf17/60] […] The document that TRUMP possessed and showed on July 21, 2021, [Iran doc at BEDMINSTER] is charged as Count 32 in this Superseding Indictment.

  5. FiestyBlueBird says:

    Count 42

    De Oliveira, to the FBI:

    Never saw anything.
    Never saw nothing.

    • Narpington says:

      It’s so clumsy and obvious. He and Nauta could have told the truth (vaguely, yeah i moved some boxes) like Trump Employee 2, who also moved boxes presumably did. I can’t believe they were stupid enough to think it would shield the boss so conclude that they were told to stonewall.

      • timbozone says:

        It’s almost as if they believed that somehow the FBI would go along with the coverup? Uh…in other words…Oliveira and Nauta are idiots, even bigger idiots if one or both of them continue to think that this isn’t going to have some very serious legal consequences beyond just being charged and arraigned.

        Seems like the government has them materially impeding a national records investigations with not much good explanation forthcoming from either of them. “I did it to protect my boss!” rings hollow if there was no need to worry about legal consequence for their own actions leading up to their false statements. Cannon is going to have to figure out if she’s into US national security being important…as “protecting my boss!” isn’t a get out of jail free card when it comes to giving away our important national secrets.

        Yeah, the appeals panel definitely got it right earlier when smacking down Cannon’s attempt to cover for Trump’s nitwittery; that’s the ongoing message from these indictments. Now it is up to Cannon to help steer these defendants and the rule-of-law straight…or not. Hopefully she’s not a “sovereign citizen!” loon/foreign spy/bonkers…

        • Narpington says:

          That’s the thing though, I can’t believe they’re such idiots, like characters from a Coen brothers movie. Trump, for all his faults and blind spots, wouldn’t trust idiots with his secret machinations just because they’d been extremely loyal employees for years, therefore I suspect they were promised by the Very Stable Genius rewards exceeding the provision of an expensive lawyer for not spilling the beans: money in the future, a sinecure from a Conservative PAC, whatever.

          • timbozone says:

            Read up on the Watergate break-in and subsequent attempt to pay hush money to the burglars. What is clear is that arrogance and a history of impunity often breed hubris. Why expect less of powerful and/or self-important people in similar circumstance.

    • Marinela says:

      People always say this as if the cover up can be wiped out as a no big deal.

      In Trump case, the crimes are really huge, not the cover up which is also illegal.
      The damage to the country this man is doing is really astonishing.

      • Hairy Chris says:

        IANAL but I suspect that the cover-up is (relatively) more straight-forward to get evidence of, and therefore bring charges quickly. These can then be used to attempt to flip those involved and get better evidence for the underlying, more complex, case.

        Sure, the obstruction isn’t as bad a crime as the original one in most cases, but it makes sense to start there – chances are evidence for the other cases will turn up in the process. It’s a bit meta tbh!

  6. paulka123 says:

    I am curious about something, isn’t it simply assumed that Trump is still holding a significant number of classified documents? If so, like isn’t that like a huge deal?

      • paulka123 says:

        Well I believe there were numerous reports of empty folders in the Mar a Lago raid.

        And Trump’s handling of the documents would certainly hint that there are other documents.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          “They said,” is not a persuasive source. Nor is the absence of evidence evidence. Trump might have empty folders that once appeared to contain classified information, but that’s not evidence he has that information. It does justify further investigation.

          • LeeNLP149 says:

            “Nor is the absence of evidence evidence.”

            I’m not sure why this would be so. Wouldn’t, for instance, the absence of evidence that a defendant committed a crime be considered evidence -not persuasive proof necessarily, but evidence- that he did not commit the crime? And why would further investigation of Trump be warranted if the missing documents were not viewed as evidence?

            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              Word games. The evidence in your last hypo is the empty folders, not the apparently missing documents.

              • HikaakiH says:

                Further, a lot of the ‘covers’ in the photo of covers strewn on the floor were in fact copies of covers. This was pointed out in an article (I think at DKos) by a former security clearance holder who drew attention to the borders of those covers. The genuine article has color print to the edge. The copies had a blank margin.

                • Fran of the North says:

                  I saw that as well. The originals are printed ‘no-bleed’ specifically because copiers can’t print to the edge.

          • P’villain says:

            Lest we forget, the indictment alleges that Nauta moved about 64 boxes from the storage room to the residence between 5/23 and 6/2/22, and then moved about 30 back on 6/3/22. Those unaccounted-for boxes seem a stronger basis for adverse inference and further investigation than the empty folders.

            • timbozone says:

              Yes and no. Yes, this is an important area to get nailed down by the USG investigators. And no, there is an easy explanation if the box count went down simply because of consolidation of contents.

              To the latter, what if boxes were collated better and organized better? We already have some indication that the lids were replaced. Why couldn’t there also have been consolidation of records leading to the reduction in the number of the boxes need to contain the records? On the other hand, if you were an investigator, you’d need to confirm that this is what in fact happened to reduce the box count.

              The main problem here is that it appears that some of the participants in the disposition of these boxes, boxes allegedly containing some of the nation’s secrets, have not cooperating with the government sufficiently to make such determinations.

        • Doug R100 says:

          That could be part of slamming trump with so many charges-if he comes clean to where some of the documents are, he could get his sentence lowered?

      • BRUCE F COLE says:

        I only have what the superseding indictment mentions in counts 32 and 34. One must assume they have the Milley/Iran plans in hand (if that’s what Trump was bragging to the biographers about), since they mention that it’s included as part of 32.

        As to your “inelegant” argument about this superseding compendium being “jack shit,” well sometimes a stiff uppercut followed by a roundhouse haymaker can set your opponent dangling from the ropes, if delivered with enough force and acuity.

        Is this piling on? Without a doubt. Is it within the constraints of the Code of Judicial Conduct? No doubt. Does it fit your perception of what constitutes Federal prosecutorial panache? I guess not.

        Smith might indeed have been waiting for what happened last week — with Trump pleading for interminable delay because of how extravagant discovery promises to be — to drop this depth charge into their lap, as if to say, “If you want to be overwhelmed, we’ll accomodate.”

        Now he can let that settle in with them while he’s queueing up the J6 barrage.

        • bmaz says:

          What a load of shit. I sincerely hope “you” are never prosecuted under the standards you so gleefully cheer for. Spare me. And, if ever so confronted, pay your defense lawyer a small fortune.

          • jdmckay8 says:

            Smith is going after a mobster, a guy very willing to circumvent any law.. much less lower himself to do what is right when there is $$ be aprehended. And that’s just scratching the surface.

            Under the circumstances, I for one am perfectly ok with Mr. Smith pulling any arrow from his quiver, including the ones only reserved for situations like this. Nothing illegal of course. But a gatling gun is better than a 6 shooter.

            Going back at least 25 years, I cannon think of a single Special Counsel (most investigating repubs) that was successful. They all played by the book, they all stayed in their lane, they all lost and a lot of very dangerous people walked.

            I REALLY want to see a different movie this time.

            • Peterr says:

              Given that this is Emptywheel*, the case of US v Irving “Scooter” Libby comes to mind as one case that the special counsel (Patrick Fitzgerald) got a jury to convict a high level target.

              To be fair, Libby’s silence kept Dick Cheney out of trouble, Dubya commuted Scooter’s sentence to keep him out of jail, and Trump pardoned Scooter entirely. But none of those are the fault of the special counsel.

              *Marcy literally wrote the book on that case.

              • jdmckay8 says:


                Yes, Fitz got a conviction.

                To be fair, Libby’s silence kept Dick Cheney out of trouble, Dubya commuted Scooter’s sentence to keep him out of jail, and Trump pardoned Scooter entirely.

                I think you made my point.

                But none of those are the fault of the special counsel.

                No. But maybe Smith is a different kind of prosecutor and sees things most of the others don’t. Like Marcy. After now +/- 8 months seeing him operate, I think he’s such a person.

          • BRUCE F COLE says:

            If I ever find myself facing the kind of shit that he’s finally (after a lifetime of rabidly fucking people over and skating) being called to account for, with the heinousness quotient of my alleged criminality being as off the charts as his — and with the very survival of our democratic republic hanging in the balance — I would hope that I’d be facing a similarly potent fusillade.

            This isn’t what Hunter’s royal fuckups amount to, for instance.

            This is organized crime, aimed directly at the heart of our democratic form government, all in the service of the accumulation of personal power and of abject venality. Blast away, Jack.

    • PaintedLadyRunner says:

      I have a similar, related question. The document that Trump was showing to the biographer and fan club in his office that is the topic of the superseding indictment happened at Bedminster. Smith has that document. Do we know how Smith got them? Does this suggest that Trump is complying with document subpoenas at least as they relate to documents at Bedminster?

      • c-i-v-i-l says:

        As Lisa Rubin tweeted, “the chart accompanying counts 1-32 (the willful retention of documents counts) reflects that the Bedminster document [count 32] — a “presentation concerning military activity in a foreign country” — was returned to the feds on Jan. 17, 2022. What happened on Jan. 17, 2022? That’s when ‘after months of demands by the National Archives … to provide all missing presidential records, Trump provided only 15 boxes, which contained 197 documents with classification markings.'” So that’s how Smith got it: via NARA.

        • WilliamOckham says:

          This is hilarious because Trump never would have been charged for that document if he hadn’t had himself recorded narrating his crime in real time.

          It’s not only hilarious though. It also means that since the initial indictment, Smith got someone (probably someone at that meeting) to identify the document. It’s really starting to look like the first indictment may have caused some folks to reconsider their loyalty to Trump.

  7. Unabogie says:

    Question for the lawyers. We now have several people on the record saying that the crimes they were about to commit were ordered by Trump. But as far as I can tell, there is no record of Trump saying it in a text along with them. This is similar to the Michael Cohen case in which Trump caused Cohen to commit the crimes.

    So does Trump have reasonable doubt here? Can he simply throw all these folks under the bus, providing the other indicted lackeys refuse to flip?

    • scroogemcduck says:

      I’m sure he will try, no doubt dangling a Presidential pardon as an incentive.

      Trump’s MO is still the Roy Cohn playbook – use cut-outs, don’t make or keep written records, use attorney client and any other privilege to the max to ensure no direct evidence of his involvement.

      • BRUCE F COLE says:

        There’s the explicit recounting in one of the charges of a discussion where Trump is telling minions to go through the boxes and he makes the physical motion of picking docs out of a box and tossing it aside. No verbal messaging, just physical and unambiguous, and testified to by someone in attendance. That’s as good as “He told us to get rid of anything incriminating.”

        I’m too eye-weary to find the charge number, but it’s in there.

    • timbozone says:

      I’m actually more curious about how and why Oliveira and Nauta handled the materials in the boxes the way they did. The nation’s security laws are currently about the handling of government secrets and securing information vital to the defense or offensive postures of our foreign policy and military capabilities, etc. These two guys seem to have picked an unwise moment and manner to be involved in a national security records investigation that touches on some to a lot of these laws.

      Are those laws to be honored or not? Are the investigative tools used to investigate possible leaking of national secrets going to be respected or not within the Federal courts. To me, that’s much bigger than Trump ever was or ever will be. And that’s the message of the indictments themselves.

  8. Saltheart Foamfollower says:

    I’m very intrigued by the involvement of his SuperPAC. I’m starting to wonder if there is evidence of criminal involvement that could freeze the assets (and his ability to pay his lawyers).

    • Super Nintendo Chalmers says:

      Seems logical. At minimum PAC employee participated in the group chat re: loyalty.

  9. bmaz says:

    Jack Smith is Jack shit. This strung out crap makes me want to puke.

    Complete abusive horse manure.

    Smith could not have brought this in his elegant and impressive original indictment? Seriously?

    What a load of crap.

    • Unabogie says:

      Why? It’s clear that the new defendant was attempting to talk his way out of it and Smith was entertaining it. Should he have let this guy walk? Charged him without hearing him out regarding becoming a witness? Are you sure you’re looking at this with clear eyes?

      • bmaz says:

        I’m sorry! When did Smith know about it, or do you not have a clue what I am talking about?

        I’ll go with the the latter. Before you ask me questions, please make sure you know your ass from a hole in the ground.

        • Unabogie says:

          I know exactly what you’re talking about. It’s not as if this is a sophisticated point you’re making. Trump charged Trump and Nauta and left off Oliveira for some reason that none of us know for sure. I suspect it’s because Oliveira was considering testifying and then changed his mind. I don’t think that was worth delaying the original indictment. Jack Smith agrees. Is there something specific you think I’m missing here? If so, please explain.

          • bmaz says:

            No, you do not know anything. I do not care about Smith. I have been making these arguments since Smith was in high school, often successfully. But, hey, thanks for the help there “Unaboogie”.

            • Unabogie says:

              It’s Unabogie (one O) so it’s good to see you’re a stickler for details, and I wasn’t aware we all had to use our real names here. But to my point, you didn’t read very closely, because I said neither of us knows, which includes, well, me! But what I did ask was for you to explain what you think I’m missing here, as people do when having a conversation that isn’t just about yelling at the other party. As Marcy speculates, there are a few possible reasons why Smith would have charged Trump and Nauta and not Oliveira. The most obvious possibility in my mind is that Oliveira was still weighing his options and Smith decided not to wait on him. I’d like to understand (without insults) why that’s not a valid way for Smith to operate in this case. If you know, and just don’t want to say, that’s fine, but it doesn’t further the conversation at all.

            • HikaakiH says:

              I prefer reading the bmaz who would castigate people for using infantile derogatory names for Trump. Where is he?

        • emptywheel says:

          Well, we know that since the first indictment Smith finished exploiting Nauta’s phone, which could explain the Signal.

          And gave a target letter to what I suspect is the IT guy. Who has obviously testified.

          So — pretty obvious answers. He filled out his evidence.

          • bmaz says:

            Uh huh. NEVER could have known about this a month ago or perfected it in one indictment. This is a joke.

              • timbozone says:

                This. This site is not for the weak of integrity, nor is it for those who are opposed to the >ideals< of The Enterprise. E. pluribus unum. Flexibility of mind and demeanor can be key. How often do we avoid sanctimony? What is the right balance? Who is to say?

            • WilliamOckham says:

              If Smith had known about the conversation in the closet between De Oliveira and the IT guy before the first indictment, surely he would have charged De Oliveira. There are only two possible sources for that conversation and one of them was added in the superseding indictment. I’m not sure what you think is going on here and I would like to know.

              • earlofhuntingdon says:

                “Conversation in the closet.” Suggests abundant evidence of guilt rather than a normal venue for business talks. Either that or the next but last clue in a board game.

            • Connor Lynch says:

              I’ve seen a lot of exasperation from you but no explanation of why you’re exasperated.

              You seem upset about it and I have literally no idea why because you haven’t explained yourself.

              • 2Cats2Furious says:

                Please do not hold your breath waiting for an explanation from bmaz. All I’ve ever seen from him are: (1) ad hominem attacks against prosecutors, and (2) claims that he is an experienced lawyer, so we should just take his word for it.

                For the record, IAAL and was a civil litigator for decades. Pretty successful at it. I happen to agree with Marcy that the most likely reason for the superseding indictment is that the IT manager recently decided to start cooperating with the DOJ (better to lose one’s job than go to jail), and additional information was obtained from Nauta’s phone. There is no reason I can think of that Smith wouldn’t have brought these charges in the original indictment if he had that information at the time of filing, and bmaz certainly hasn’t provided any compelling argument otherwise.

                • earlofhuntingdon says:

                  Your notion of the range of bmaz’s comments reads like an insurance defense lawyer’s description of a medical malpractice claim. Intentionally constipated. Your last paragraph, starting with the third sentence, is readable.

                  • 2Cats2Furious says:

                    Nice try, but I never worked for insurance companies. I was a BigLaw partner for many years, and they could not have afforded my rates.

                    And if you think I’m missing some brilliant legal analysis from bmaz behind comments like “Jack Smith isn’t Jack shit,” then please feel free to enlighten me. I can only go off what I see him post here.

            • David F. Snyder says:

              It sure is not clear why Oliveira wasn’t charged on the first indictment. Based on the superseding indictment’s statements, DOJ already knew Oliveira committed perjury (it would seem, but maybe there was an evidence hole?). Occam’s razor would suggest something along the line of them filling an evidence hole. “If you catch a tiger by the tail, don’t fail.”

              • bmaz says:

                Thanks for the lawsplaining. I think I am okay. When it is actually adduced in court, then we know something.

                • timbozone says:

                  Gotta admit, this Smith guy seems to have a lot of ducks on his plate…some of which aren’t fully cooked yet. Did he volunteer for the job? Hard to tell. What seems obvious is that he has trained his mind for just this sort of thing. Is that scary? Possibly.

                • emptywheel says:

                  I’m not lawsplaining. I’m explaining very basic facts that you refuse to admit show that your tirade here is misplaced.

          • P J Evans says:

            It does explain that “pool-draining” incident, which didn’t make sense as maintenance.

          • montysep says:

            If you bother to read the items emptywheel is posting and the public reporting, it’s pretty obvious this was coming. Marcy has been writing since eons ago about the time consuming process of cracking phone security measures. Pay attention and instead of browbeating and bullying the audience here you could post something substantive or else step aside and zip it.

            It’s pretty obvious defense attorneys would like cases presented to them cleanly and all wrapped up with a nice pretty bow. You’re just being a tiresome pissant & talking your book. How the last thing you want going forward are complicated cases. Boo hoo. You don’t want multiple jurisdictions with superseding indictments because it’s more complicated for poor defense attorneys. You don’t want anything messing with the easiness of your side of the docket day to day. Prosecutors shouldn’t have leverage. Call the waahmbulance.

            Give your condescending, attention-seeking, fecal obsessed you defending the world trope a rest. Take a look in the mirror Mr I’ve got a 1000 blog posts here and infinity rude replies and supposed last line of defense against trolls is a troll himself.

            I have no idea why Marcy puts up with your abusive behavior. If this was a relationship everyone would be telling her to get out asap. Can’t fathom how she would justify your continued aggression. “He did something nice a long time ago.”

            Unlike you, many of us appreciate long time lurkers and “Mr x time poster” posting what is more often than not more value added than you bring. Periodt.

            Does anyone want to add anything?

            • LordAvebury says:

              Thank you for saying so unambiguously what several of my friends (and, probably, many other people) have been feeling.

            • lazaraga says:

              I like bmaz and value his insight. I don’t think he deserves these attacks, either toughen up or don’t engage. Take his adversarial or contrarian viewpoints as an opportunity to examine an issue from all sides.

            • Martin Cooper says:

              Yeah, I second the motion. Time for bmaz to indulge in a little selective serotonin uptake inhibitor. I’ve been lurking here a long time, recently dared to put my two cents in, and like many others, got slammed offensively by bmaz. I don’t mind being told I’m wrong, but don’t address me (or others) as though I just committed a potty accident in public. My observation, again over time, has been that the vast majority of commenters on EW are serious adults attempting to contribute substantively to the conversation about important issues. Basically, bmaz, grow up.

              • timbozone says:

                Me? I don’t like mescalated drinks. However, I do not begrudge those who do. To each his poison of choice.

                Clarity of thought can come about in any number of ways is what I’m trying to say. Poorly. Again.

            • hollywood says:

              He has insights, but perhaps the heat in Phoenix and environs has fried his brain. Old man + extreme heat = anger.

              • bmaz says:

                Have made a pretty good living, for a very long time, asking these kind of questions. And being concerned about how cases are prosecuted. In real courts, not just internet blog comment sections. Sure, not always right, but do have a bit of experience and success at it.

                Also, our air conditioners work quite well and have a diving pool out back. The heat is not bothering us much.

            • Bugboy321 says:

              Thank you for this. That’s rich telling bmaz to read the site, because that’s his go-to answer to far too many questions.

              To be fair, this long time lurker (back to the FDL days) and certifiably IANAL retentive entomologist recently got a reasoned response from bmaz on a question. Thanks, bmaz!

            • KayKinMD says:

              I’m usually a lurker, but when I see his name in comments I usually skip on by. Not worth the agita.

              • bmaz says:

                Thanks Kay, nice to see you again after all these years. Maybe join in more often, again, instead of just lobbing in at me. Or, not. Whatever, thanks.

            • zscoreUSA says:

              Wow, montysep

              “browbeating and bullying”, “condescending, attention-seeking”, “infinity rude replies”, “continued aggression”, “abusive behavior”?

              Sounds like you are describing a real “irritant”.

            • Violater says:

              Thank you MONTYSEP. I think Marcy and this site and most of the participants are wise, interesting and sometimes riveting. A few stand out for (sometimes) rude and boorish comments.

          • 2Cats2Furious says:

            Marcy’s explanation makes perfect sense to me, and IAAL. Perhaps Employee 4 initially declined to be interviewed/took the 5th. And perhaps when he saw the actual indictment – and the fact the DOJ charged a low-level employee like Nauta – he changed his mind about cooperating and/or got himself an attorney who actually gave him good legal advice about cooperating.

            I think people who aren’t Trump loyalists can’t really appreciate what it must be like to live in his world of lies. Sometimes they need to be smacked upside the head with a good hard dose of reality.

    • Out of Nowhere says:

      This isn’t helpful. I realize you are the resident hectoring scold, but to display this type of animosity for the process only gives oxygen to the growing movement that disrespects the law and its enforcement.

      Surely someone with your experience must realize that given the complexity of this case and its many cast members, there may be occasion to deviate from a standard linear progression. And, Marcy has provided reasons why the Special Prosecutor may have taken this action. Can you show a modicum of respect for the SP’s efforts?

      You are not someone simply posting from a dark basement. You’re a moderator and a founder. Given your elevated status, in my opinion you hold a heightened duty to consider the consequences of your posts.

      You rightfully chastise posters for jumping to conclusions not supported by known facts. Could you kindly apply the same standard to your posts rather than impugn the motives of Jack Smith?

      • bmaz says:

        It is “the process” I worry about. And, yes, I do actually have a bit of experience at it. A ton of people here relentlessly blurt “INAL”. Well I am, and have spent a career at it. I care about this process. And I care more about it than I do Trump. I always have

        • Knowatall says:

          In a sense, that’s the rub. Since this blog is mostly about Trump, your overriding concern about process provokes understandable resistance (backlash). Having that caveat here (and, yes, it’s elsewhere too) makes it easier to accept the truculence.

  10. earlofhuntingdon says:

    The allegations against Trump in para. 3 bear repeating:

    “3. Classified documents TRUMP stored in his boxes included information regarding defense and weapons capabilities of the United States and foreign countries; United States nuclear programs; potential vulnerabilities of the United States and its allies to military attack; and plans for possible retaliation in response to a foreign attack. The unauthorized disclosure of these classified documents could put at risk the national security of the United States, foreign relations, the United States military, and human sources and the continued viability of sensitive intelligence collection methods.”

    This is not about the horseshit Trump has claimed in the past. This is not about a few mistakes or taking work home, or writing his memoirs. It’s not about stuff Trump owned or had any valid interest in possessing. This is about serial felonies that put US national security at risk for Trump’s personal gain.

    • RipNoLonger says:

      Bears repeating – sometimes lost in the other minutiae:

      “This is about serial felonies that put US national security at risk for Trump’s personal gain.”

      • bmaz says:

        A) It is The Hill. B) The Hill is garbage C) Why is ANY lawyer, yammering about his former client?

        The fact that former Trump lawyers relentlessly do this is really disturbing.

        • timbozone says:

          Re C—

          Possibility 1: He wants to lawyer only for naive, innocent people who can afford his TV personality rates?

          Possibility 2: He’s trying desperately to keep his security clearances in a patent display of public nuttery, ie he wants to be considered for the position of Special Counsel in the next (if any) GOP Administration.

          Possibility 3: He was bored, heavily sedated, and they asked.

        • dadidoc1 says:

          I’m not a lawyer, but if a client fails to pay for legal services, might that contribute to the yammering. I’m not saying it’s ethical, but there’s just something about not getting paid for services rendered that makes it karma like.

        • WilliamOckham says:

          Cobb saying that is a breach of professional ethics. The fact that he’s probably right about what he said doesn’t change that.

    • timbozone says:

      Have you read the indictment filed today yet? It’s pretty clear and comprehensive.

      I recommend that everyone who is keenly interested in this case read it, especially if you’re going to spend just as much time (or more) reading others opinions about it.

      Todays amended indictment, adding Mr. de Oliveira and related charges (emptywheel’s link, scroll around to the top to read start reading the whole thing):

      Smith informing Cannon’s court of the changes in the indictment, the prosecution’s estimated impact and related upon the current trial:

      As bmaz will/has/will continue to point out, this is all pre trial stuff; whether some of the evidence Smith’s team outline in the filing will be admitted at trial is another matter. For my part, I say it looks like there’s a good chance that it’s a tight case for many of these charges…but then IANAL so…

  11. RM-Woods says:

    If someone asks you to do something for them and promises to pay for your attorney, maybe it’s something you shouldn’t do.

    [Welcome back to emptywheel. Please use the same username AND EMAIL ADDRESS each time you comment so that community members get to know you. This is your second user name; “RM-Woods” is not the same as “rm-woods” and your email address used on this comment was salted with the number 4 compared to your last comment on July 1. Thanks. /~Rayne]

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Especially when the guy making the offer has a lifelong history of not paying his bills.

    • HikaakiH says:

      I’d be surprised if Trump were paying the assigned attorneys. I expect they are paid by one or more of the Trump-aligned PAC’s.

      • Leu2500 says:

        It’s his PAC. But based on reporting from 2016 he considers it his money. FFS he’s even using it to pay Melania her allowance.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Exactly. The PACs are paying agents. Regardless of whose money it is, Trump decides who to pay, how much, and when, and what he demands in exchange.

          • HikaakiH says:

            I thought PAC’s were forbidden from coordinating with candidates. The people running the PAC’s can’t be getting their instructions via telepathy. How does this continue? Is this a problem because a Democrat once got their PAC to pick up their dry cleaning so it’s ‘both sides’ and mustn’t be stirred up? Should we expect some sort of fraud charges for people raking money into the PAC’s for expenditure on ‘alternative political strategies’ like keeping the candidate, his family, friends and employees out of prison?

  12. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Trump’s best defense might even work. More than one would be successor is braying about pardoning Trump, “to heal the nation.” The latest is the flailing Ron DeSantis. Many thanks, Gerald Ford, many thanks.

    If I were Trump, though, I’d be worried that they’re trying to buy my endorsement, without ever intending to pay the bill, a business model Trump knows well.

    • P J Evans says:

      I think that anyone wanting to pardon the former guy “to heal the nation” is deluded. This isn’t 1975, and he is far worse than Tricky Dicky was.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Very logical, but so unlike Trump and the GOP. Nor would pardoning Trump be about healing the nation, any more than it was the reason for pardoning Dick Nixon.

  13. WilliamOckham says:

    The most parsimonious explanation for this superseding indictment is that they just flipped the IT guy (Trump employee 4). It’s his testimony that puts De Oliveira squarely in the conspiracy.

    • obsessed says:

      And the reason there’s no J6 indictment today was so as not to conflict with the M-a-L indictment they knew was coming, right?

    • Hairy Chris says:

      IT guys/gals tend to know where the bodies are buried*, so to speak, if they’re worth their salt. I say that as someone who has had various system administration roles in multinationals – what I have had access to at times was pretty crazy, but the IT manager for a small outfit is basically GOD.

      *And they’ll probably have the backups too if you ask nicely/subpoena them.

    • timbozone says:

      Uh…how do we know that he “flipped” as opposed to always just told the truth when asked? I ask because one should not attach some sort of idea that there’s been a betrayal of some sort of agreement or understanding with a possible criminal simply because one has been forthcoming with an LE investigation. If there is evidence of a “flip” here then, by all means, please provide a link.

    • emptywheel says:

      Right: There were reports that another Woodward client was the one who got a target letter recently. At least at the beginning, John Irving represented De Oliveira for his first interview and Woodward represented Yuscil Taveras, the IT guy. If that’s right, then Taveras got a target letter, and if THAT’s right, he may have said, “Well, I don’t want to end up like Nauta, I’m getting my own fucking lawyer.” SO there’s a pretty ready explanation for how he may have come to more candid testimony only recently.

            • timbozone says:

              Maybe when the government didn’t go after Navarro as heavily as he likely deserved? To be sure, Navarro’s alleged illegal record retentions are important in some small scheme of things…but do they threaten our military preparedness, diplomatic stances, foreign intelligence assets, the means and methods to any great extent? Likely Navarro’s USG records do not, being more about Navarro trying to avoid his own embarrassing/possible criminal behavior(s), thus, in the main, of little interest in the grand scheme of the national defense. Trump, on the other hand, a bumbler on a much grander scale than Navarro is likely to ever be discovered to be, still refuses to cooperate fully in attempting to ascertain the full extent of the potential national security breach which he is alleged to have promulgated. Therefore, while it is laudable that we have a system in which defense counselor demand of the court that there be some sort of solemnity and decorum in the handing out of indictments, that stance may be in conflict with the urgency which has befallen.

              Our amazing society tries to contain both types of urgencies, tries to embrace that, to balance the urgency of the accused with that of the national well-being. We assume that the greater well-being, in the long run, comes from maintaining the rights of defendants. However, the short-term well-being of society may frightfully depend on such things as our intelligence gathering means, methods, up to and including human assets. For national defense, we may be dependent on secrets with regard to our military plans and troop mobilization plans, communications methods, analyst beliefs, etc, etc, much of which must remain secret to be more effective on our behalf. So, may we continue to effectively balance both urgencies, that of national defense and personal rights, both of which are important. We will never get it exactly right and we are always wise to question the current state of the application of these things.

  14. Christy Smith says:

    This superseding indictment reads like the trial will be the Three Stooges on the stand. I can’t wait for the amended witness list, to see who gets added to the mix. Because this is a spicy read on several levels, and I think Walt Nauta may be beginning to sweat. As intended. We live in interesting times.

    As an aside: Is the Prettyman courthouse footage today giving everyone else Libby flashbacks, or what? Maybe Marcy and I need another road trip… (evil grin)

    • P J Evans says:

      Hi. Redd! It’s always wonderful to see you!
      (I still have the recipe for the Whiskey Tango-Foxtrot.)

    • wasD4v1d says:

      I think the multiple defendant / shared defense cases are three-body chaos theory cases that will take a long time to bring to trial. (I think bmaz complaint would be this is a reprise of ‘the battle of Palmdale’). But there are a couple items where Trump will face the law alone – this is Smith bringing out his rooks, entering the end game.

      • bmaz says:

        I do not ever want prosecutors to “bring rocks”. Bring facts. Bring them quietly and professionally. Put them in actual evidence, through pleadings or trial. That is all.

        • wasD4v1d says:

          Rooks. In chess, when these come out, you are finally getting serious. In this case, the two charges against Trump alone look more like the real deal, though I wish they weren’t part of a cluster munition aimed at taking out pawns

          But your rocks analogy gets to the issue of the ‘battle of palmdale’, navy fighters wildly firing over 200 missiles at a runaway drone over a suburb of LA, every single one of them missing their target but causing a heck of a lot of damage on the ground. (luckily, amazingly, no one was injured or killed.)

    • wasD4v1d says:

      I think the multiple defendant / shared defense cases are three-body chaos theory cases that will take a long time to bring to trial. But there are a couple items where Trump will face the law alone – this is Smith bringing out his rooks, entering the end game.

    • klynn says:

      Yes! Hi Reddhedd! Oh how I would LOVE you both to make THAT road trip! Hope life is good in your parts! I’ve missed you!

      • Christy Hardin Smith says:

        This is what happens when I retire and my brain once again has something to chew on that’s meaty and legal, right? May the speaking indictments continue apace! (Waves to all!)

  15. John Pinson says:

    I’m wondering more and more whether Nauta and De Oliveira actually WERE successful in deleting surveillance footage. It’s not spelled out in the indictment exactly that they were, but the tick tock of events on June 27th 2022 at MAL seem to imply just that. Check out pages 28, 29 and 30. And then midway through page 30 we get this: “In July 2022 the FBI and grand jury obtained and reviewed surveillance video from the Mar A Lago club showing the movement of boxes set forth above.” I’m pretty sure there was some reporting back when the the initial indictments dropped that the Justice Dept. had been in touch with a company that provided cloud backup for MAL video. Would be pretty wild if Trump’s lackeys successfully deleted video on premises, but Justice was able to recover cloud copies. Talk about consciousness of guilt.

    • William Bennett says:

      One thing a lot of commentators out in the public sphere are getting wrong is the statement by the Employee 4, the IT tech, who is being reported as saying “he would not have the right” to delete the server. This is incorrectly quoted and it makes a huge difference. In the indictment he says “he did not believe he had the RIGHTS to do that.” Clearly meaning he didn’t have the administrative permissions, not the moral grounds or whatever, which is how some people are taking it. This is a much stronger statement that he simply didn’t have the ability to do it, lacking the necessary credentials for what they were asking/pressuring him to do. A lot of these systems are set up that way, read-only for the local admins, so the power to do this sort of thing is retained offsite by the 3rd-party firm that’s actually running the system. If they still wanted to pursue deleting the server after hitting this impediment, that’s a MUCH higher bar to get over.

      • Rayne says:

        This comment should get more recognition than it received.

        Depending on the access permitted by the system administrator, there are various levels of permissions local administrators are given which allow them to read, write, execute, change, delete files. Most local admins will not have a full set of permissions to do all of these to files or folders; a sysadmin will have far wider range of permissions.

        Yuscil Taveras may only have been expressing concerns about his limitations depending on server policy or the contract service provider’s policy if MaL used offsite storage for surveillance video streams.

  16. MrF says:

    The fact that DOJ has upped the ante to ‘Trump Employees 3 – 5’ tells you why DJT’s super genius coverup is coming apart.

  17. Connor Lynch says:

    De Oliveira was (still is?) represented by John Rowley, who resigned from representing Donald Trump as soon as / just after he learned charges had been filed.

    It will be interesting indeed to learn how prosecutors know the details of some of the conversations mentioned in the indictment.

    • obsessed says:

      As per MSNBC, he’s now represented by the hardest working man in show biz, Stanley Woodward.

      • P J Evans says:

        I’d have gone for a lawyer who would work for *me*. But loyalty to the former guy seems to override good sense.

        • bmaz says:

          With a decent lawyer, that just cannot be. And the fee agreement letter makes it very clear. You have one, and only one, client.

          • Connor Lynch says:

            It seems reasonably apparent from the role that Woodward was reported to have allowed Trump and Trump’s PAC to have in selecting Nauta’s local counsel that there is a divided loyalty problem here.

        • Fran of the North says:

          However, many of the bit players don’t have the deep pockets to pay for quality representation. The Siren Song of ‘free’ has lured many a ship to the sharp rocks.

          • earlofhuntingdon says:

            A newbie public defender would be better than a lawyer paid for by Donald Trump, whose priorities, loyalty, and talent are in question.

          • William Bennett says:

            Isn’t that kinda Marcy’s point? You use these underlings in a way that exposes them to criminal jeopardy they can’t possibly afford the legal muscle to defend against, then offer free lawyers out of your own magnanimous pockets. It’s a repeated pattern. Cassidy Hutchinson the most eloquent example. Astonishingly she was able to see the trap behind the offer and pulled out of it. One of the most amazing stories in the whole sorry business IMO.

  18. obsessed says:

    Lawrence O’Donnell asked Weissmann how, in paragraph 91 of the new indictment, the prosecutor’s knew the substance of a call between Trump & de Oliveira and he said it might be possible, since it was after the initial search warrant, that the FBI was “up on a wire”. Does that seem right and would they still not have mentioned it in the indictment? The other possibility he gave was that de Oliveira told them in the same interview for which they’re charging him with lying about something else he said.

    • cldellow says:

      Another option: CDO texted Trump Employee 5 something like “bro, Trump just told me he’ll hook me up with a lawyer”, and Trump Employee 5 voluntarily showed it to the investigators.

      In para 81, CDO tells TE5 that Nauta is coming. But it’s secret, don’t tell anyone. Despite the secrecy, CDO also tells TE5 that Nauta wanted CDO to talk to TE4 about surveillance footage storage. That seems like bad conspiring, so I infer that CDO and TE5 might be buddies, which seems plausible, as they were both valets at Mar a Lago.

      In para 91, Nauta asks TE5 if CDO is loyal. TE5 himself writes a Signal message to Nauta and the PAC representative saying CDO is loyal.

      Basically, why was TE5 involved in this at all by CDO and Nauta?!

      Presumably we’ll learn in due course, but it makes me think TE5 may have incriminating text and Signal messages that he’s shared with the investigators.

    • P’villain says:

      Both theories sound exceptionally far-fetched to me. But then, I’ve never been a TV lawyer pundit. The relentless demand for hot takes must take a toll.

      (This is in reference to obsessed’s post.)

  19. Narpington says:

    I love the irony of Trump being indicted for trying to delete files considering his obsession with buttery mails, continued here with his suggestion (carefully memorialized by Trump Attorney 1) that Trump Attorney 1 should take the fall for losing the classified docs, noting that “her” attorney did for deleting the emails.

  20. HikaakiH says:

    Is bmaz the fulcrum of balance on arguments about prosecutorial conduct in cases involving Trump?
    bmaz appears to believe so. Many disagree. I’m not qualified in any way to know.
    Now, off topic: In an ideal world, Ukraine would choose not to use cluster munitions that will inevitably leave bomblets lying around on Ukrainian territory that in years to come will harm civilians (i.e. maim and/or kill adults and children alike). Is it ethical for Ukraine to use those weapons against military targets if they work effectively to shorten the length of the war and reduce the totality of civilian deaths from this conflict? (Side note: Russia has been pitching cluster munitions into civilian areas in Ukraine since March ’22. Further side note: There are millions of mines now lying around in Ukraine so unexploded cluster bomblets will only be a minority part of the hazards to civilians in a post-war Ukraine.) It is a modern large-scale version of a trolley problem.
    The world is full of difficult situations with a menu of nothing but shitty choices.
    There is no doubt the advent of Trump as a political force has increased the number of those situations and adverse impacts on the US justice system are a part of that.
    From what I understand, the opinion on SC Smith’s conduct that matters for institutionalists is the opinion of AG Garland. I can’t imagine AG Garland is going to be wringing his hands about SC Smith playing hardball against an opponent like Trump in a case with such deep ramifications.

    • bmaz says:

      Welp, have been a “fulcrum” against prosecutorial conduct since very long before Trump appeared on the political stage. Don’t you want those questions asked? If not, why not?

      How do you think criminal law actually works in the real world? It is an adversarial system. I ask questions because I know some of the questions to ask (certainly not all the right ones), not because it makes me popular.

      By the way, there is a difference between “hardball” and bullshit. If this was a defendant you were sympathetic with, you would be screaming. But because it is Trump, you are cheering. Step back and look at the bigger picture.

      • HikaakiH says:

        Fair enough.
        Do you accept that your hard questions may have reasonable answers that none outside the SC’s office currently know?
        Maybe it is as Marcy suggested up above – time to exploit Nauta’s device and new info from IT guy?
        Someone once counseled me to ‘not let the perfect be the enemy of the good’ when time is a factor. Should Smith have held off indicting anyone until he is able to write an indictment as good as Trump thinks his phone calls are? I know processes often get messy regardless of people’s intentions – especially adversarial processes, which I will admit I do not enjoy.
        As to the big picture: I see a nation struggling as a whole lot of bad actors game what they can from antiquated electoral and constitutional systems. The US justice system isn’t the whole picture, is it? I know you have pointed many times to the fact that the best way of defeating Trump is beating him politically, rather than hoping for the law to intervene. That political process is likely to be very damaging as it runs through next year. I live in a country that built its system by combining elements of the US system with the Westminster system. We have our own problems, but none are of the scale posed by Trump.
        Anyhow, I hope the weather where you are relents sometime soon. (We know Trump won’t relent until he’s under the turf at Bedminster.)

        • bmaz says:

          I have asked these questions in actual courts before. Would be happy to again. I know they are unpopular. There is a nation struggling, but you can’t fix it with the wrong. Yes, Smith should have fired one complete shot. Not piecemeal garbage.

          • P’villain says:

            Superseding indictments are allowed. Piecemeal does not automatically equal garbage. This one comes pretty promptly, and early in the proceedings against a defendant who has allegedly tried to obstruct justice. Under the circumstances, I’m inclined to give Smith the benefit of the doubt.

      • Zirczirc says:

        I DO want prosecutorial conduct to be monitored and questioned. However, further up this thread you said the original indictment was “elegant and impressive.” If I were a defense attorney, which I certainly am not, I wouldn’t want to be preparing to defend against one set of charges only to have another batch of charges filed at a later date. So is your problem with the superseding indictment that it was filed at all? Or do you doubt that Smith really is acting on new information? Are there occasions when filing a superseding indictment is reasonable?

          • Ewan Woodsend says:

            You have explained your position many times. Mr Trump, private citizen, should be treated as well as we would hope everyone else should. On set of rules for all.
            And (you did not write that, maybe you disagree) the level of means between a private citizen and the government is so unequal that all efforts should be made to remedy that imbalance.
            I understand it is an hypothetical situation and therefore is not what law is about, but, should he become elected once more and face a trial, would then your position change, considering that he wouldn’t be a regular Joe anymore, and therefore rules could be different, or not?

    • Spank Flaps says:

      I’ve been using internet forums since the late 90s, and there is always one (with bmaz’s attitude) on every forum.
      I dunno, maybe he needs a good shag or a big spliff?

      • bmaz says:

        I have been married for 30 years and understand the other things. Maybe STFU, and mind your own business. Mine is not yours.

        Go “shag” yourself.

  21. Baseless Fabric says:

    On the surface, ¶86 is humiliating for Nauta – a grown man meeting in the bushes across the Mar-a-Lago property line like a child pretending to be Jason Bourne.

    We can all laugh at the man-children conspiring to destroy evidence for “the boss,” but the sad truth is that these are Trump’s “best people.” Their adolescent sense of duty and loyalty attracts them to Trump, and makes them easy to manipulate.

    Let’s hope, like Michael Cohen, they grow the fuck up in the face of the criminal justice system.

    • scroogemcduck says:

      I would love to see the job decription for “valet” at Mar-a-Lago.

      Must be able to greet guests, unload luggage and park cars.
      Must be loyal and trustworthy.
      Must turn a blind eye to boss’s criming.
      Must fully participate in boss’s criming.
      Must not rat to the Feds.

    • timbozone says:

      Maybe he, Nauta, wasn’t conspiring to protect his boss. Maybe he was conspiring to protect himself and/or other persons known/unknown. Ever think of that? What if he and de Oliveira and other unnamed co-conspirators were doing other things with the nation’s secrets besides propping up Trump’s ego? Got it? This isn’t just about Trump and men-children, this is allegedly about top secret US national security records that are considered incredibly important to the US’s intelligence capabilities and military preparedness, etc.

      Laughing at people caught up in the stuff that people often get caught up in when they’re not doing it for your own entertainment is not as many reckon. Ever watched “The Crowd” (1928), a silent movie classic, in it entirety? It’s a brilliant film about everyday hubris.

  22. RitaRita says:

    Employee 4, the IT guy, was smart. He sent the request to delete up the chain of command. I wonder if he is still employed at Mar a Lago.

    Nauta and De Oliveira must feel like they are two mice caught between two huge cats – Trump and the Government. Side with one and go to jail. Side with the other and lose your job.

    Some of the tv lawyers think the main purpose of the additional charges is to get Nauta to flip, or, at least, answer questions truthfully. But I wonder if part of the motivation isn’t to impress Judge Cannon with the national security risk and the egregiousness of Trump’s obstructive actions. And, perhaps to turn the heat up to get the return of any documents that have not yet been returned.

    I don’t know if these additional charges are DOJ overreach. But I wouldn’t ever want to be a target.

    • timbozone says:

      Yes, the starting point of this entire affair was the removal of documents that were owned by the US government. Clearly, if one takes national security seriously, one has to remain concerned by the possibility/likelihood of documents still unaccounted for. It’s not clear that we will ever know the full extent of the breach of national security in this affair. What is clear is that there is now a strong criminal case in which the nation’s security laws will be once again be put to the test. In the past, people have been put to death for breaching these laws…so there is not some little controversy surrounding these laws…

      Today, how unseriously are the nation’s secrets treated by self-important people in this country? And how far are those not really interested in a fair application of the surrounding laws prepared to go to avoid political and legal consequence for breach? This case definitely puts a highlighter to the dysfunctions that have grown in our society…a petty TV personality now the fulcrum.

    • Hairy Chris says:

      Getting all “unusual” requests in writing is absolutely IT CYA 101 material. Hell, even trivial updates that touch live data should have an OK from the owner. If that data is of a legal/financial/personal/audit type then not going near it until the exact changes to be made are signed off. Nope, no siree.

      It’s not unknown for IT staff to end up charged and the person who made the request to avoid it because they didn’t do this.

      On a professional level I’ll be highly amused if an IT contracter, well aware of the reputation of his employer, uses receipts to sink these people!

      • RitaRita says:

        Nauta and De Oliveira allegedly asking the IT guy to “delete the server” sounds like a bad remake of the “Oceans 11” movies.

      • Tech Support says:

        I mean hell it doesn’t even have to be legal liability. IT people catch strays all the time. Live in this business long enough and you don’t do anything that doesn’t have an audit trail behind it demonstrating

        1) You were asked to do something dumb.
        2) You advised the requestor that it was dumb.
        3) They said do it anyway.

  23. soundgood2 says:

    I’m interested in the box tops that Nauta asked to be replaced before the 15 boxes were went to NARA. He said he had marked up the ones on the boxes too much. I wonder what he was writing on them. Did he go through them? Was he aware that they contained classified documents. Was he cleared to access that material at any time? Would his position as valet necessitate some kind of clearance of that type?

  24. Kick the Darkness says:

    I remember in one of Marcy’s earlier posts (looks up-June 10) she felt the MAL indictments could be a tactical nuke. Meaning (as I followed) not necessarily something DOJ anticipated bringing to trial, but rather to force a plea or to put pressure on Nauta for further cooperation. I was wondering how the superseding indictments (and the objections to them) might fit within that frameworks. Thanks as always for all the commentary here. With the blue bird Xed out for me it is even more valuable.

    • Kick the Darkness says:

      The relationship between the superseding indictment and the tactical nike theory is addressed in a 7/29 post. Cheers.

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