The US Supreme Court could hear three cases involving the events surrounding Jan. 6, 2021, for the first time, and their decisions in these cases could affect former President Donald Trump’s criminal indictments.
Later this year, the Supreme Court is set to consider the cases of Edward Lang, Joseph Fischer, and Garret Miller, all of whom have filed appeals with the court arguing that prosecutors exceeded their authority when they were charged with obstructing “official proceedings,” in violation of a 2002 law passed after the Enron scandal.
“It is no overstatement to say the future of the First Amendment hangs in the balance,” attorneys representing Lang said in his appeal to the Supreme Court, adding that a law “intended to combat financial fraud … has been transformed into a blatant political instrument to crush dissent.”
According to the Department of Justice, over 200 people are currently being charged with violating the obstruction law in connection to Jan. 6, including Trump himself. Should the court side with the defendants, the decision could have wide-reaching implications for the hundreds of other defendants facing similar charges.
“What they’re doing is what any defense lawyer in their position would be doing,” University of Miami law professor Craig Trocino told USA Today. “That doesn’t mean that they’re going to win or that they’re legally correct.”
He added that the defendants’ arguments hinge on the definition of “official proceeding,” and said, “When you look at a statute like this, for these purposes, you use the words’ ordinary meanings. I don’t believe that that’s so outrageously vague as to offend due process under these circumstances.”
Theodore Bunker ✉
Theodore Bunker, a Newsmax writer, has more than a decade covering news, media, and politics.
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