Updated Jul 6, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Trump aide Walt Nauta pleads not guilty in classified documents case

Walt Nauta arrives at the James Lawrence King Federal Justice Building in Miami on July 6. Photo: Alon Skuy/Getty Images

Walt Nauta, an aide to former President Trump, pleaded not guilty Thursday to charges related to his handling of classified documents.

Why it matters: Both Trump and Nauta have pleaded not guilty in the federal classified documents case, which means the former president could split time between the courtroom and the campaign trail as he seeks another presidential term.

  • A federal judge in Florida last month set a preliminary start date of Aug. 14 for Trump's criminal trial in the case.

State of play: Nauta was present at the brief hearing Thursday, during which his lawyer entered his plea.

  • Nauta will face up to 20 years in prison if he is convicted of the most serious charge against him, the Washington Post reported.
  • Stanley Woodward, who is representing Nauta, declined to comment after the hearing.

The big picture: Nauta was indicted alongside Trump in June and named in six counts of the historic indictment, including conspiracy to obstruct justice and making false statements.

  • Previous arraignments for Nauta were delayed because he had trouble retaining a lawyer in Florida to represent him, per ABC News.
  • Trump himself pleaded not guilty to all charges in the classified documents case last month, days after the indictment was unsealed.

Zoom out: Authorities on Wednesday unveiled new details of the affidavit the FBI used to obtain a warrant to search Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence.

  • Among the new details is surveillance footage appearing to show Nauta moving boxes in May and June.

Editor's note: This story was updated with additional details.

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