Judge Assigned to Trump’s Federal Case is a Former Prosecutor Appointed by Trump
Former President Donald Trump has been charged with federal crimes, including willful retention of national defense information and obstruction of justice, in the first case of its kind in US history. A person familiar with the development has confirmed that Judge Aileen Cannon, a former federal prosecutor appointed to the bench by Trump in 2020, will preside over the case.
Judge Cannon’s Background and Career
Aileen Cannon previously worked as an assistant U.S. attorney mainly based in the federal prosecutors’ office in Fort Pierce, Florida. She later worked on appeals of criminal convictions and sentences. Cannon has prosecuted 41 cases as part of the Major Crimes Division, and has also been a member of the Federalist Society, a conservative legal organization.
Cannon’s Decision in Trump’s Case
In a related case last year, Judge Cannon appointed a “special master” to review the documents seized by the FBI, and temporarily barred federal agents and prosecutors from reviewing a batch of classified documents seized during the search. Her order was ultimately overturned by a federal appeals court, which found that she had overstepped.
Trump’s Supporters and Critics
Trump’s supporters had cheered her ruling as a check on what they viewed as a politically motivated probe. His lawyers had argued that a special master was necessary to ensure an independent review of the records taken during the search. However, some experts said the judge gave undue deference to the former president and unnecessarily put on hold certain investigative work by the Justice Department.
Cannon on her Confirmation Process
She was asked during her 2020 Senate confirmation process whether she had any discussions with anyone, including people at the White House or the Justice Department, about loyalty to President Trump. In a written response, she replied: “No.”
Judge Aileen Cannon, a former federal prosecutor appointed to the bench by former President Donald Trump in 2020, will preside over the federal case against him. This is the first time in US history that a former president has been charged with federal crimes. Cannon previously worked as an assistant U.S. attorney mainly based in the federal prosecutors’ office in Fort Pierce, Florida, and has prosecuted 41 cases as part of the Major Crimes Division. She has also been a member of the Federalist Society, a conservative legal organization.