I Think Trump Just Got a Subpoena from Mueller
I once represented a client in a divorce case who was cooperating with the federal government. I realized because of the sensitive nature of his work, I would need the judge to seal his case in order to protect his identity.
After some back and forth with the judge, the judge said there would be no reason to seal his case since he was assuming my client’s “street name” isn’t the same as his real name.
I replied all I need is for someone to see him walk into the courthouse, follow him up here, and look at the docket sheet. Motion granted.
Prior to my motion being heard, I had asked the judge and he agreed, to clear the courtroom.
Now imagine if I had the judge shut down the entire floor of the courthouse, the elevator could not make it to that floor, and I got in and out of the building through a back door, so no one knows when I got in, out, and doesn’t even know my identity or that of my team of lawyers. What would you think?
I originally wrote about this “secret subpoena” in November because it seemed like a story being ignored by the media.
Based on reporting by CNN and an article by Politico, the rationale that Special Counsel Mueller may have subpoenaed President Trump not only made sense based on my experience, but it was a logical conclusion to reach.
Those two posts are seen below.
The question is if it is not President Trump that received the subpoena, then who? Clearly, it’s someone who:
(a) has plenty of money to fight a subpoena and a grand jury investigation that has been batted around the appellate courts, and
(b) wants their privacy.
Can it be a government official? There has been no reporting of government attorneys involved. Then again, we don’t even know who the attorneys are for this secret subpoena.
A Russian oligarch? I doubt it since that person would have skipped town a long time ago.
A wealthy businessman or woman (American) tied into Russia and money laundering? That would make sense since any investigation could potentially affect business. But who in Trump’s orbit could that be?
The hearing on Friday had been scheduled for some time and lasted approximately one hour. When it was over, the defense attorneys once again disappeared, not to be seen by any reporter(s).
Could Mueller have subpoenaed President Trump? I’ll answer that with another question. Why not?
President Bill Clinton’s case confirmed that a sitting prison could sit down for a subpoena, but that was a civil issue, not criminal. But, that would get Mueller halfway there. It only makes sense that if Mueller was able to connect all the dots to the President, that he would seek a subpoena. It doesn’t mean an indictment, just a subpoena and in his final report to the Senate, Congress can decide what’s next.
I’ve said from day one that every tweet by the President is being looked at because tweeting and social media is a form of communication. There is no difference in my mind between making a phone call and telling a White House official to do this or that versus displaying that message to hundreds of millions of people on social media. Actually, I’ve argued it’s worse because that adds more stress to the situation versus a private phone call.
Thus, I continue to say that tweeting that Robert Mueller’s investigation is illegal, a “witch hunt,” etc. could be interpreted as obstruction of justice. I’m not alone with that legal thought. The courts, especially the 9th Circuit, have used President Trump’s tweets to determine intent, especially with the original Muslim travel ban.
If Mueller has information that contradicts a tweet from President Trump, better yet, Trump’s written answers to Mueller’s questions, due diligence requires Mueller to seek a subpoena to clarify the discrepancy.
I not only think we are getting close to a presidential subpoena, but we will witness for the first time in our nation’s history, a sitting President pleading the Fifth Amendment.
Alexander Hernandez, Esq.
Twitter – @mcatty_alex
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