DOJ filing kicks off another week of legal battle over seized Trump documents | national news


The Justice Department has completed a preliminary analysis of documents extracted from former President Donald Trump’s estate in Florida, according to court documents, ahead of a hearing scheduled for this week on Trump’s belated request to appoint a special master for conduct a third-party document review.

U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon said over the weekend that she had a “preliminary intent” to grant the former president’s request for a special master, or court-appointed third party, to examine the documents that the FBI took from Mar-a-Lago on August 8 research. But the Trump-appointed judge said the order should not be understood as his final decision on the matter.

As a result, Cannon ordered the Justice Department to submit a response to Trump’s request by Tuesday, while asking him to file under seal a more detailed account of what was taken at Mar-a-Lago. during the FBI search. Trump’s response to the Justice Department is expected by Wednesday, the judge noted, with a hearing on the special master’s issue scheduled for 1 p.m. Thursday.

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But some have questioned the effectiveness of Trump’s request, which came weeks after the search, when his legal team – in their first court filing related to the FBI’s search of his Florida estate – argued that the feds had violated the former president’s fourth amendment. rights. In addition to the request for a third party to review the seized documents, Trump’s attorneys also asked the government to provide a more detailed receipt for the property, return any items seized outside the scope of the warrant, and release ‘prohibit further examination of seized material until the appointment of a special master.

In particular, the judge in her order did not grant the request to stop the examination. And in documents filed Monday, the Justice Department noted that its team had “completed its review” and identified “a limited set of documents potentially containing insider attorney-client information.”

Cannon asked Trump’s lawyers to submit additional details about the request for a special master after initial filings drew criticism from some analysts for shortcomings and general shortcomings. On Friday, the team again filed with the judge the search for a special master, while suggesting that the FBI search may have been conducted improperly.

“It offers the deeply disturbing prospect that President Trump’s home was raided on the pretense of suspecting that presidential records were on his property — even though the Presidential Records Act is not a criminally enforceable statute,” they said. Trump’s lawyers.

The developments come after a key document – the search warrant affidavit – was released on Friday over objections from the Justice Department, which argued that its release “could alter the trajectory of the investigation, reveal the ongoing and future investigative efforts and undermine officers’ ability to gather evidence or obtain truthful testimony.

But the federal judge who authorized the Mar-a-Lago search ordered the release of the affidavit after a number of media outlets requested it only in redacted form.

The numerous redactions to the affidavit have left much room for speculation. Still, he revealed the high stakes of the criminal investigation while citing lingering concerns in court filings about the possibility of obstruction of justice and more sensitive documents being withheld.

Also on Friday, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines wrote in a letter to congressional lawmakers that her office would conduct an assessment of the potential national security risks posed by the documents that were removed from Trump’s estate in Florida, after that key lawmakers have asked for more details about the contents of the documents.

“We are pleased that in response to our investigation, Director Haines has confirmed that the Intelligence Community and the Department of Justice are assessing the damage caused by the improper storage of classified documents at Mar-a-Lago,” Adam said. , Chairman of the House Oversight Committee. Schiff of California and Rep. Carolyn Maloney of New York told Politico, adding that the release of the affidavit “affirms our grave concern that among the documents stored at Mar-a-Lago were those that could endanger human sources”.


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