(Corine Gatti, Headline USA) Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe dubbed Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s indictments against former President Donald Trump a “disappointment” because it’s doomed to fail.
“I if I had to characterize it, it’s a disappointment,” McCabe, who was fired by Trump in 2018, told CNN.
“I think everyone was hoping we would see more about the direction that they intend to take this prosecution. What is the legal theory that ties that very solid misdemeanor case, 34 counts of misdemeanors to the intent to conceal another crime, which is what makes it a felony?” McCabe told dispirited CNN talking heads.
“It’s simply isn’t there. Now, it’s possible that the DA has an elaborate and solid theory that’s backed up by a lot of evidence, and he has just decided to conceal that at this point,” he noted. “At the end of the day, if all of our legal friends read this indictment and don’t see a way to have a felony, it’s hard to imagine convincing a jury that they should get there.”
After Trump’s arraignment on Tuesday, the “mystery felony charge” in the indictment was not mentioned. With 34 counts of misdemeanor charges that can be stacked to a felony to conceal another crime, Bragg conveniently left out what the phantom felony charge is — leaving a lot of openings for Trump’s legal team to attack.
“You heard the defense lawyers, I think rightly, complaining about that,” Elie Honig, a CNN legal analyst said. “The whole purpose of an indictment is to serve notice on the defendant of what exactly you’re charged with, and what exactly you’re going to be defending yourself against. There are documents. They do corroborate the fact that money was paid, but they don’t necessarily show Donald Trump’s exact involvement in it.”
Trump pleaded “not guilty” on Tuesday to the 34 felony counts brought against him. These accusations allege that he was falsifying business records to cover up a scandal surrounding his 2016 campaign and a hush money payment of $130,000 to Michael Cohen to silence Stormy Daniels. Ironically, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday awarded Trump $121,962.56 in attorney’s fees from Daniels.
The courts have set a date for President Trump’s legal proceedings on Dec. 4 — two months before the start of the 2024 Republican presidential primary calendar.