During the recent search on the Florida residence of former President Donald Trump, the FBI seized papers, the status of which has been called into doubt.
Friday, at the request of both the Department of Justice and the former president, Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart released the warrant.
The warrant stated that the search will occur “on or before August 19, 2022” and “in the daytime 6:00 am. to 10:00 p.m.”
“The locations to be searched include the ‘45 Office,’ all storage rooms, and all other rooms or areas within the premises used or available to be used by FPOTUS and his staff and in which boxes or documents could be stored, including all structures or buildings on the estate,” the memo stated.
The warrant authorized the FBI to confiscate “all physical documents and records constituting evidence, contraband, fruits of crime, or other items illegally possessed” according to the United States Code.
This signifies that only contraband items were to be confiscated.
During its unusual search on Trump’s Palm Beach property on Monday morning, the FBI collected classified documents, including several marked as top secret.
Reportedly, some of the records had been classified in the past, but Trump has asserted that he declassified them during his presidency, challenging their designation as “Top Secret.”
“Sources told Fox News that some records could be covered by executive privilege, which gives the president of the United States and other officials within the executive branch the authority to withhold certain sensitive forms of advice and consultation between the president and senior advisors,” Fox News said.
The former president has been forthcoming on social media about the search and the contested documents.
On Friday, Trump quickly announced on his Truth Social platform that, as president, he had already declassified the documents seized by investigators.
“Number one, it was all declassified. Number two, they didn’t need to “seize” anything. They could have had it anytime they wanted without playing politics and breaking into Mar-a-Lago. It was in secured storage, with an additional lock put on as per their request,” the former president said on Twitter.
“They could have had it anytime they wanted—and that includes LONG ago. ALL THEY HAD TO DO WAS ASK.” he continued.
The Wall Street Journal reports that “The list includes references to one set of documents marked as ‘Various classified/TS/SCI documents,’ an abbreviation that refers to top-secret/sensitive compartmented information.
“It also says agents collected four sets of top secret documents, three sets of secret documents, and three sets of confidential documents. The list didn’t provide any more details about the substance of the documents,” the Journal noted.
“The warrant said investigators were seeking all records that could be evidence of violations of laws governing the gathering, transmitting or losing of classified information; the removal of official government records; and the destruction of records in a federal investigation,” continued the article.
According to the report, agents removed around 20 cartons of items.
More on this story via The Republic Brief:
They included “binders of photos, a handwritten note and the executive grant of clemency for Mr. Trump’s ally Roger Stone, a list of items removed from the property shows. Also included in the list was information about the ‘President of France,’” the paper continued.
“Mr. Trump’s lawyers argue that the former president used his authority to declassify the material before he left office. While a president has the power to declassify documents, there are federal regulations that lay out a process for doing so.” CONTINUE READING…