Trump investigation: punishment against short message service X

Trump investigation: punishment against short message service X

The short message service Twitter, recently renamed X, has been fined $350,000 (around €320,000) for failing to hand over documents relating to former US President Donald Trump’s user account to special counsel Jack Smith in good time. This is the result of a judgment by a federal appeals court in the capital Washington that has now been made public.

According to the court ruling, the Justice Department’s special counsel successfully applied for a search warrant in January that required Twitter to hand over data and documents related to Trump’s user account @realDonaldTrump.

Delivery only after the deadline

Smith also achieved that Twitter is not allowed to inform anyone about this search warrant – not even Trump. The company took legal action against this non-disclosure order and therefore initially did not hand over the documents requested by Smith.

A judge then demanded that the company hand over the documents under threat of a fine. Because this was only completed three days after the deadline, the judge imposed a fine of $350,000. Twitter then went to an appeals court, but lost in mid-July.

While Trump’s tweets are publicly viewable, the company also has non-public information such as short messages sent only to specific individuals, draft tweets, location data, and the type of device used to send tweets.

charge through special counsel

Smith last week filed charges against Trump over his attempts to overturn the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. After his defeat by Democrat Joe Biden, the ex-president made false allegations of election fraud and tried to prevent confirmation of Biden’s election victory. Finally, on January 6, 2021, radical Trump supporters stormed the Capitol in Washington, when Biden’s election victory was to be finally certified there.

Trump, who wants to retake the White House in the November 2024 presidential election, is accused of, among other things, conspiracy to defraud the United States. The 77-year-old Republican has pleaded not guilty to all four counts.


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