SCOTUS Turns Away John Eastman Appeal

( – The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) started its new term by turning away several appeals cases. Among them was a move by former Donald Trump attorney John Eastman, who had hoped the justices would allow him to keep his email messages with the MAGA leader from the eyes of jurors in the January 6 proceedings. He claimed client-attorney privilege, but multiple issues — including the lawyer’s affiliation with Chapman University, a non-profit institution, during the time he consulted Trump — blew his case out of the water.

Eastman originally filed his petition in April after the District Court found that the crime-fraud exception applied to his case, essentially tossing out the client-attorney privilege claim. The crime-fraud exception follows that in most cases, information between a lawyer and the person who hired them is protected by law — but only when the advice pertains to past events. The District Court determined that the exception applied in Eastman’s case because the emails in question discussed not previous actions but plans for a future crime. The lawyer then unsuccessfully took the case to the Ninth Circuit to stay the decision. The Supreme Court was the final stop, so Eastman now has no legal way to disclose the emails when the case goes to trial.

Further complicating Eastman’s case is the fact that he was a law professor employed at Chapman University when he advised Trump. Times of San Diego explains that Eastman wasn’t teaching at the time he advised the former president, but he was still doing work for the school. Because Chapman is a non-profit organization, his work in the political arena put the attorney in violation of IRS law, so technically, Trump was never even a legal client.

Justice Clarence Thomas, who’s suffered criticism over his wife’s alleged support of the J6 event and his participation in a previous related decision, recused himself from this most recent ruling.

~Here’s to Our Liberty!

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