Supreme Court Hands Win To Hundreds Of Jan. 6 Defendants, Weakens DOJ's Case

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by Tyler Durden
Friday, Jun 28, 2024 - 03:18 PM

The Supreme Court on Friday handed around 350 Jan. 6 defendants a potentially huge win, while weakening the DOJ's case against former President Trump in the process.

The court narrowed one specific charge - obstructing an official proceeding - that the DOJ had relied on in more than 300 J6 cases, including Trump's, Axios reports. This charge has been used almost exclusively to prosecute white-collar crimes like evidence tampering, however the DOJ tried to apply it to J6 defendants, arguing that the riot was an attempt to obstruct an official proceeding - that being the certification of the 2020 election.

The court on Friday said that prosecutors would now need to show that a defendant interfered with documents, records or other material parts of an official proceeding. They also sent the case back to a lower court to reassess Jan. 6 cases in light of the new test.

Oddly, Barrett dissented, saying that the majority "does textual backflips to find some way—any way—to narrow the reach" of the obstruction law.

There are currently more than 1,300 J6 defendants - of which roughly 350 of them having been charged with obstructing an official proceeding. Around 170 people have been convicted ussing that charge.

That said, many of the protesters were convicted on other charges, which will still stand despite the obstruction convictions potentially becoming invalid.

The ruling could also weaken the Biden DOJ's case against Trump - who faces the same charge that the court narrowed, along with a charge of conspiring to obstruct an official proceeding.