The special master reviewing 11,000 documents seized at Donald Trump’s Florida estate asked for help Thursday from a retired judge.
The special master in the Trump Mar-a-Lago document lawsuit has requested assistance from a retired federal judge.
The special master in the case, U.S. District Judge Raymond Dearie, suggested that James Orenstein assist him. According to Dearie, Orenstein is a retired federal magistrate judge with a top secret clearance who has experience with difficult cases, assessing papers for attorney-client privilege, and serving as an appointed aide on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.
Dearie stated that Orenstein will be paid $500 per hour. Trump is footing the bill for the special master’s investigation, and Dearie has given him and the government until Saturday to reply on staffing and remuneration.
U.S. District Court Aileen Cannon appointed Dearie at Trump’s request.
Dearie mapped out a schedule for his review of the documents. He set a Friday deadline for Trump and the government to agree to a vendor who will handle the documents electronically. He set a Monday deadline for the government to make the documents available electronically with a spreadsheet to identify them.
Dearie asked Trump and the government to review the documents in three batches and report to him on any disputes about whether records are privileged by Oct. 7, 14 and 21.
If either side has any objections to how Dearie designates the documents, they will have seven days to file arguments.
“Any party may include a request for oral argument in its initial brief,” Dearie wrote. “The Special Master will promptly issue a report and recommendation after briefing and oral argument has been completed.”
Dearie has said he hopes to complete his review by Nov. 30.