Former US President Donald Trump is under investigation for possible obstruction of justice and violations of the Espionage Act. This is evident from the search warrant released Friday on the basis of which the FBI searched Trump’s country home in Florida on Monday.
During that search, documents were found that had been marked as ‘top secret’. These are intended to be “available only in special government facilities.” The estate of a former president, of course, is not.
In all, FBI agents took about 20 boxes of documents, including folders with photos and a handwritten note on which Trump pardons Roger Stone, an ally of the former president. The documents are also said to contain information about French President Emmanuel Macron.
Among the classified materials collected were four sets of top-secret documents, three sets of classified documents and three confidential documents, reports The Wall Street Journal. Top Secret is the highest level of classification that the U.S. government can give information, followed by Secret and Confidential.
One set was marked “Various Classified/TS/SCI Documents”, the abbreviation for highly classified and sensitive information. The inventory did not contain more details about what is in the documents.
Agents searched, among other things, for secret documents about nuclear weapons. It is not known whether such pieces have been found. The unusual search demonstrates “the deep concern” among government officials about information still with Trump that could potentially end up in the wrong hands.
Trump believes the accusation that he illegally possesses classified documents about nuclear weapons is nonsense. On his own social media, he calls the nuclear weapons issue a ‘hoax’.
The raid on the former president’s home sparked a stir this week. Attorneys and Trump supporters called the raid disproportionate compared to other cases in which White House officials illegally took official documents or knew e-mails.
The search by dozens of FBI agents at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach was approved by Attorney General Merrick Garland. He confirmed that the raid was carried out in an investigation into documents Trump allegedly took from the White House illegally.
The Justice Department asked a Florida judge today to release the search warrant, barring Trump’s objections. That has been granted. The 76-year-old former president has already said he would not block the release of the warrant. He did say that he is the victim of “unprecedented political efforts by law enforcement” by “radical-left Democrats”.
The Justice Department points out that Trump and his lawyers have received a copy of the search warrant, as well as a receipt of the seized documents. They could also have shared its contents with the judiciary of their own accord.
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