Reportedly, Special counsel Jack Smith has officially made it back to the United States in order to head up the ongoing investigations into former President Donald Trump after taking a role at The Hague as a prosecutor.
Smith, who was formerly a war crimes prosecutor, was asked to take the role by Attorney General Merrick Garland to take the role of a special counsel to look over two Department of Justice investigations into Trump in November. Smith elected to go along with the requested appointment but took some time to recover from a biking accident and continued working in the Netherlands at The Hague.
He finally made his way back to the United States just weeks after his official appointment. The exact date he returned is still unclear as the Justice Department has not released an official announcement regarding his return to the country, as reported by The Washington Post. However, a number of people familiar with Smith and his travel stated to the Post that Smith has been in the country “for some time.”
Garland issued the appointment to Smith for the role of special counsel in the wake of Trump officially announcing his third run for president at an event held in Mar-a-Lago this past November.
“The department of Justice has long recognized that in certain, extraordinary cases, it is in the public interest to appoint a special prosecutor to independently manage an investigation and prosecution,” stated Garland. “Based on recent developments, including the former president’s announcement that he is a candidate for president in the next election and the sitting president’s intention to be a candidate as well, I have concluded that it is in the public’s interest to appoint a special counsel.”
“Appointing a special counsel at this time is the right thing to do. The extraordinary circumstances presented here demand it. Mr. Smith is the right choice to complete these matters in an even handed and urgent manner,” he stated.
Trump is looking down the barrel of possible criminal prosecution due to a pair of investigations stemming from the DOJ. The investigation looking into the events of January 6 concerns whether or not Trump incited an insurrection or otherwise attempted to unlawfully interfere with the official certification of the results from the 2020 election. That investigation has spawned hundreds of prosecutions against the protesters that elected to rush the U.S. Capitol.
Additionally, Trump is being investigated due to a large cache of documents that were recovered by the FBI from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home back in August. Trump faces potential charges in relation to the holding of those documents as well as possible obstruction of a federal investigation, as explained by Garland.
In the role of special counsel, Smith will issue a determination about whether or not Trump will face any charges in relation to either of these investigations.