U.S. prosecutors seek court delays amid hundreds of Capitol riot cases

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U.S. prosecutors seek court delays amid hundreds of Capitol riot cases
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March 13 (UPI) — Federal prosecutors have asked for a two-month delay in many of their cases related to the Jan. 6 attack at the U.S. Capitol as they struggle to juggle charges brought against more than 300 people.

Justice Department lawyers asked for continuances in the cases in court filings Friday.

“The investigation and prosecution of the Capitol attack will likely be one of the largest in American history, both in terms of the number of defendants prosecuted and the nature and volume of the evidence,” prosecutors wrote.

The filing said that more than 300 people have been charged in the deadly riot and prosecutors expect to charge another 100. Many face charges such as assault, trespassing, conspiracy and destruction of government property.

“Developing a system for storing and searching, producing and/or making available voluminous materials accumulated across hundreds of investigations and collected throughout the country, while ensuring that such system will be workable for both the government and defense, will take time,” the filing read.

“In sum, the unusual complexity of the Capitol attack investigation warrants the requested continuance.”

Prosecutors said they’ve executed some 900 search warrants related to the cases, and have accumulated more than 15,000 hours of surveillance and body-worn camera footage from law enforcement, about 1,600 electronic devices, the results of hundreds of searches of electronic communication providers, more than 210,000 tips, and tens of thousands of pages of interviews of suspects and witnesses.

The Jan. 6 attack came after former President Donald Trump gave a speech on Capitol Hill calling on his supporters to “fight” against Congress’ efforts that day to certify the Electoral College results of the 2020 election, which gave President Joe Biden the win.

The resulting riot and breach of the Capitol led directly to five deaths that day, including that of Capitol Police officers Brian Sicknick. Two other officers who responded to the attack later died of suicide.

Trump was acquitted in an impeachment trial on charges he incited the violence.

Siege aftermath: damage to historic U.S. Capitol

Capitol Hill police salute the passing of the funeral hearse on Sunday for slain Officer Brian Sicknick, who died in the rioting at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. Photo by Mike Theiler/UPI | License Photo

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