A report reveals details of the search warrant. It includes new information on why the FBI searched Donald Trump’s home.
Update from Friday, August 12, 9:52 p.m .: During a search of Donald Trump’s property, the FBI seized documents marked as “top secret”. The New York Times reports, citing the search warrant available to the US newspaper.
The FBI was investigating possible crimes related to violations of the Espionage Act, which prohibits the unauthorized holding of US national security information. Possible criminal offenses under other laws are also identified: destroying or concealing documents to obstruct government investigations or administrative procedures, and unlawfully removing government materials. Several US media had requested publication of the search warrant.
The search warrant directory contains several entries for classified documents that the FBI seized. These include, according to the New York Times :
- four entries for “various top secret documents”,
- an entry for “miscellaneous classified/TS/SCI documents” (more restricted type of top secret information),
- three entries for “various secret documents”,
- and two entries for “miscellaneous confidential documents” and one labeled “confidential document”.
Donald Trump: FBI raid in Mar-a-Lago – new details revealed
FRIDAY, AUGUST 12: WASHINGTON DC – US Attorney General Merrick Garland has “personally approved” the FBI’s raid on ex-President Donald Trump’s Florida mansion. There was a “sufficient reason” for the historically unique action against a former US president, Garland said on Thursday (August 11) in Washington. “The Ministry does not take such a decision lightly.”
The FBI and Department of Justice have not yet given a reason for Monday’s search of the Mar-a-Lago property in Palm Beach. Garland did not do so either on Thursday, citing “ethical obligations” as justification. However, the minister announced that he had asked the responsible judge in Florida to publish the search warrant because Trump had confirmed the raid and there was “great public interest in the matter”.
Donald Trump can still appeal
Donald Trump has until Friday afternoon 3:00 p.m. local time (9:00 p.m. CEST) to object to the application. The ex-president has the search warrant, but he has not made it public. The document should explain in more detail why the authorities felt the raid was necessary – and what the FBI agents were looking for.
According to media reports, it was about documents that Trump had taken from the White House to Mar-a-Lago after the end of his presidency in January 2021, although by law he should have handed over all documents to the National Archives.
The Washington Post reported on Thursday, citing anonymous sources, that the FBI agents were looking for classified documents on nuclear weapons, among other things. However, it is unclear whether these were nuclear weapons from the USA or from another country.
Trump: Search is allegedly politically motivated
Trump has described the search of his property as politically motivated. The 76-year-old right-wing populist accuses President Joe Biden’s Democrats of using the judiciary to prevent him from running for the presidency in 2024.
The raid has sparked anger and outrage in right-wing circles, fueling fears of violence. A gunman tried to break into the office and was shot dead after a chase and an exchange of fire with police officers, according to the FBI. (mse/AFP)