It was not “the government” as described in the court ruling, that solely devised to delay the release of the Trump pardon-for-bribe scheme. I suppose “the government” would initially be the FBI, in this case. It was Judge Beryl Howell, who is most recent in our memory for directing the DOJ to release unredacted version of the Mueller report to the House Judiciary Committee in their search for gathering information for Trump’s impeachment, that allowed the delayed timing of the unsealing of the document related to the Trump pardon for bribe scheme.
On August 28th, 2020 a court memorandum was issued for the government’s desire to investigate messages between (redacted) parties concerning the discovered pardon scheme, that became apparent to the government’s “filter” team who were scouring computer devices for anything protected by attorney/client privilege in a separate case.
The judge allowed 90 days (Sept> Oct> Nov 28) for the government to respond to the court’s desire to release a redacted version of the original document. The government did respond on the 25th of November, asking for the document to be kept sealed. The Judge then asked, why is it, if every name is redacted, would this need to be kept under wraps? The government responding by simply forwarding the document, fully redacted at the judge’s original request, on Nov. 30.
Could the judge have given the government 30 days or 60 days? I guess. My guess also is, this is already a done deal. It already didn’t happen, and wasn’t going to happen as the proposed pardon-for-bribe scheme. So the judge was either operating outside of concern for the upcoming election, or under the concern that a scheme that didn’t happen would unnecessarily affect the election.
I presume this, from one unredacted line in the original memo.
The investigative team, should have access to all of the communications, so they can “confront” the named individuals to either wrap it up, or commit to further investigative steps to determine what crimes were committed. Not: So the investigative team can ascertain the scope of the crimes for something that has happened or was likely to happen, from which to charge the named individuals.
In short, there was a proposed scheme among four individuals to undertake the pardon-for-bribe scheme. At some point two of the individuals did have access to “senior White House officials,” but whether or not the proposition ever got to the stage of a pardon-for-bribe is dubious, and whether or not the scheme matters at all now isn’t clear. That an effort was made to appeal for a pardon, probably happened, but we don’t know if a bribe was ever offered.
At any rate, the timeline proposed, that pushed the document past the election date, was Judge Beryl Howell’s doing, and the government availed themselves of using all of that time.
It becomes kind of confusing from the redacted names, and trying to figure how they are being referred to. There is:
- A prisoner (current or past).
- Prisoner’s lawyer.
- Outside lawyer.
- A political donor.
A large portion of the legible part of the document is dedicated to describing how it is, as far as the court is concerned, that the government should have access to the communications in question, which appear to be entirely emails. Judge Howell explains in full detail, any cover the 4 individuals might have had is spoiled from the emails being CCed to the donor whom does not enjoy attorney/client privilege with any of the parties.
It is also argued that the outside lawyer, is not plausibly working for the prisoner or the prisoner’s lawyer, but even if such a stand were made, refer to the first point. Emails already spoiled.
There is one other interesting tidbit. Apparently the outside lawyer was already aware of this investigation, probably within that 90 day window, because he tried to change the subject line on three emails to indicate that he did enjoy attorney/client privilege as far as the contents of those particular emails were concerned.
If I am correct, the originating case has/had been going on for some time. It could possibly already be concluded. This new/tangential case that sprung from it, would have been apparent as a potentiality to all parties involved if the prisoner and/or any accomplices chose to cooperate with authorities in a plea deal. Such is the case of Elliot Broidy (and accomplices), whose name immediately sprung to mind upon hearing about about this potential pay-to-play scheme.
Also, it’s worth noting that three of the four were to be confronted with the scheme, not all four. The fourth I presume is/was the one in prison who is fully aware of the investigation.
Not sure how that would end up in a DC court though.