A search warrant, seen by POLITICO, reveals that the FBI is investigating Donald Trump for possible espionage law violations and removed classified documents from the former president’s Florida estate earlier this week.
Receipts attached to the search warrant show that Trump was in possession of the documents, including handwritten notes. Documents marked “TS/SCI”, one of the highest levels of government classification. Another item labeled “Information: President of France”. Also among the items taken from Mar-a-Lago this week are items labeled “Executive Grant of Generous Pardon: Roger Jason Stone Jr.”, which was pardoned in late 2020. It’s a reference to one of Trump’s closest friends.
The warrant indicates that federal law enforcement was investigating Trump for deletion or destruction of records, obstruction of justice, and violating espionage laws. A statutory conviction can lead to imprisonment or a fine.
The documents, which are due to be unsealed late Friday after the Justice Department called for their release amid relentless attacks by Trump and his Republican supporters, show the disbelief that federal investigators believed the missing documents presented. Concerns have become so serious that Attorney General Merrick Garland last week authorized an unprecedented search of Trump’s property.
The disclosure of the documents publicly confirms a court-approved search by the FBI of his Mar-a-Lago home, as Trump marshals his political allies to unleash fierce criticism of federal agents on Thursday. But details in the warrant underscore the gravity of this investigation — an unprecedented investigation of the former president for mishandling some of the country’s most sensitive secrets.
Trump has been working with National Archives and FBI agents for months since Monday, claiming the unannounced search was an unnecessary escalation. After negotiations, federal investigators have come to believe that Trump did not return everything he owned.
A search warrant signed on August 5 by federal magistrate Justice Bruce Reinhart revealed that dozens of items had been seized, most of them “leather-covered boxes of documents,” It was described in vague terms such as “photo binder” and “handwritten notes”.
Other items on the list indicate the presence of classified materials and describe them as “Other Top Secret Documents” and “Other Top Secret Documents.”
after 3:00 p.m. Department of Justice Confirmed Trump’s lawyers wouldn’t object to the release of the search warrant and the underlying receipt of the materials that have already begun to circulate widely.
Meridith McGraw contributed to the report.