Top secret documents recovered: A property receipt sealed by a federal judge shows that FBI agents took 11 sets of classified records from former US President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago property during a search on Monday.
The FBI recovered documents labeled “top secret” from former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, according to court papers released Friday after a federal judge revoked a warrant authorizing the unprecedented search this week according.
A court-sealed property receipt shows that FBI agents took 11 sets of classified records from the property during a search on Monday. A property receipt is a document prepared by federal agents to specify what was taken during a search.
Classified and Top secret documents recovered
The seized records also included some that were classified and marked as top secret. Court records did not provide specific details about the documents or what information they might contain.
In a statement Friday, Mr Trump claimed the documents seized by agents at his Florida club were “all declassified”, and argued that he would have handed the documents to the Justice Department if asked.
While current presidents have the power to declassify information, that authority ends as soon as they leave office and it was unclear whether the documents in question have ever been declassified. Mr Trump kept the documents in his possession despite multiple requests from agencies, including the National Archives, to replace the president’s records in accordance with federal law.
US Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart, the same judge who signed the search warrant, removed the warrant and asset receipt at the Justice Department’s request on Friday, when Attorney General Merrick Garland declared there was “substantial public interest” in the case. , and Mr. Trump backed the “immediate” release of the warrant.
Earlier in the day, The Wall Street Journal reported that some documents were “only meant to be available at special government facilities.” It said the list of items removed included information about the “President of France”.
The Justice Department asked a Florida judge Friday to quash the search warrant, barring the objections of Mr Trump, who is running another White House in 2024.
Mr Trump, 76, said he would not obstruct the issuance of warrants, complaining that he was the victim of “unprecedented political weaponization of law enforcement” by “radical left Democrats”.
Mr Trump and his lawyers actually had a copy of the search warrant and receipt listing the assets seized by FBI agents and could have previously disclosed the contents themselves.
The Wall Street Journal said FBI agents removed about 20 boxes of items, including a binder of photographs, a handwritten note and a clemency given by Trump to Roger Stone, a former presidential aide.
The Washington Post on Thursday, citing unnamed sources close to the investigation, said classified documents related to nuclear weapons were among the papers sought by FBI agents during the raid.
It is unclear at this point how much information will be included in the documents, if made public, or if they will include an FBI affidavit that will likely form a detailed factual basis for the discovery. The department specifically requested the removal of the warrant as well as a property receipt listing the seized items along with two unspecified annexures.
Neither Mr Trump nor the FBI have said anything about what documents the FBI may have recovered, or exactly what agents were looking for.
The highly unusual move to unseal the search warrant was announced by the nation’s top law enforcement official – Attorney General Merrick Garland – who said he had “personally approved” the raid on Trump’s home.
Mr Garland said he had asked a Florida judge to cancel the warrant because of “substantial public interest in this case”, and he asked Mr Trump and his legal team to oppose the motion at 3:00 pm on Friday. Hours (1900 GMT).
Prominent Republicans have rallied around Trump and some members of his party have accused the Justice Department and the FBI of bias in targeting the former president.
Attack on the FBI
In an attack that appears to be a direct response to an FBI search of Mar-a-Lago, an armed man attempted to storm an FBI office in Cincinnati, Ohio, on Thursday.
The attacker, who was gunned down by police after an exchange of gunfire and an hour-long standoff, reportedly posted on Mr Trump’s truth social platform that he expected his actions to be a “call to arms” Will work in
Garland on Thursday criticized “baseless attacks” on the FBI and the Justice Department, while FBI Director Christopher Wray, a Trump appointee, denounced “violence and threats against law enforcement.”
The Justice Department generally does not confirm or deny whether it is investigating anyone, and Garland emphasized that the law was being applied fairly to Trump. Top secret documents recovered
In a statement on Thursday, Mr Trump said his lawyers are “fully cooperating” and “whatever the government wanted, if we had.”
In addition to an investigation into his business practices, Mr Trump has been criticized for his efforts to reverse the results of the November 2020 election and by his supporters in the U.S. on January 6, 2021. The attack on the Capitol faces legal scrutiny.
Mr Trump was impeached for a historic second time by the House after the Capitol riot – he was accused of inciting rebellion – but was acquitted by the Senate.