Trump staffer denied talk of deleting Mar-a-Lago videos - but then he changed lawyers

Trump staffer denied talk of deleting Mar-a-Lago videos - but then he changed lawyers

Related video: Trump plans to turn himself in on Thursday over Georgia indictment

We’ll forgive you if you’re struggling to keep up with all the indictments accrued by Donald Trump in relation to his time as US president, but the investigation into whether the Republican illegally stored classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago property had a significant development thanks to one Trump staffer.

The employee, referred to only as “Trump Employee 4” and the director of information technology in court documents (but named in other reports as Yuscil Taveras), told a grand jury back in March that he could not recall any conversations being had about the security footage filmed at the resort.

Trump and two others are accused of formulating a plot to delete surveillance video from Mar-a-Lago, in an updated indictment relating to the classified documents case.

However, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) revealed on Tuesday that the aforementioned employee has since retracted “prior false testimony” and instead offered up new information which implicates Trump.


In a filing, prosecutors wrote: “The target letter to Trump Employee 4 crystallised a conflict of interest arising from [defence lawyer] Mr Woodward’s concurrent representation of Trump Employee 4 and [Trump valet Walt] Nauta.

“Advising Trump Employee 4 to correct his sworn testimony would result in testimony incriminating Mr Woodward’s other client, Nauta; but permitting Trump Employee 4’s false testimony to stand uncorrected would leave Trump Employee 4 exposed to criminal charges for perjury.”

So he swapped lawyers, ditching Mr Woodward for an attorney from the federal defender’s office, and provided the DOJ with new information which implicated Trump and two others – Nauta and property manager Carlos De Oliveira.

And Twitter/X users have since commented on the ‘flip’, drawing comparisons to former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson who ditched a Trump lawyer for new counsel last year:

Trump has pleaded not guilty in the classified documents case and denies any wrongdoing, with a trial date set for 20 May next year.

His other three indictments pertain to election interference and an accusation he paid hush money to porn star Stormy Daniels.

Trump has confirmed he plans to surrender to authorities in Georgia in relation to the state's indictment against him on Thursday.

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