U.S. judge says he leans toward releasing some evidence for Trump search

8/19/2022 8:10:00 AM

A U.S. judge on Thursday said he is leaning toward releasing some of the evidence presented by the U.S. Justice Department to justify its search of Donald Trump's Florida home last week, in a case pitting news organizations against federal prosecutors.

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Despite objections by the Justice Department, a judge said he believes 'there are portions of the affidavit that could be unsealed' referring to the sworn statement laying out the evidence for why there was probable cause to search Trump's Florida home

A U.S. judge on Thursday said he is leaning toward releasing some of the evidence presented by the U.S. Justice Department to justify its search of Donald Trump's Florida home last week, in a case pitting news organizations against federal prosecutors.

RegisterThe Justice Department opposes the release of the Mar-a-Lago affidavit, even in redacted form.The search, which was approved by Reinhart on Aug. 5, is part of a federal investigation into whether Trump illegally removed documents when he left office in January 2021 after losing the presidential election to Democrat Joe Biden.

Attorneys for several media outlets including The New York Times, the publisher of the Wall Street Journal, ABC News and NBC News told Reinhart on Thursday that the public's right to know and the historic significance of the search outweigh any arguments to keep the records sealed.

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Their probable cause will be all lies, just like everything they have done in the past, no different. 6 year witch hunt with millions of fraudulently wasted/stolen tax dollars and thats the real crime. Theft of american tax dollars for a fraudulent charges against TRUMP. There is no reason at all to unseal it at this time.

Judge rules DOJ must redact Trump affidavit in preparation for potential releaseNEW: The judge rules the affidavit in the Mar-a-Lago search case should be partially released and gives the Justice Department one week to provide a redacted copy of the affidavit used to justify the search of former President Trump’s residence, CLARIFICATION: He says he believes the affidavit should be released but has yet to make a formal decision.

PolitiFact - No leaked messages before Mar-a-Lago searchThere’s no evidence to support the claim that former President Barack Obama was in cahoots with the judge that signed off on the warrant to search former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate. 😂 Aka, you are to ideologically invested in protecting Obama to look into it It doesn’t matter. Orange Man’s Cult has already made up their mind, therefore it is true for them.

Live updates: Mar-a-Lago search warrant hearing, judge to hear Trump's argumentsNews organizations, including the USA TODAY Network, have already reported many details about key information prosecutors and FBI agents gathered that led to the search of Mar-a-Lago, through the search warrant and 'inventory list,' but they want more.

Media to ask judge to release Trump search warrant affidavitAttorneys for many of the nation’s largest media companies will try to persuade a federal magistrate judge on Thursday afternoon to make public the affidavit supporting the warrant that allowed FBI agents to search former President Donald Trump’s Florida estate last week. TRANSPARENCY!! AMERICA DESERVES IT

Media to ask judge to release Trump search warrant affidavitWEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Attorneys for many of the nation's largest media companies will try to persuade a federal magistrate judge on Thursday afternoon to make public the affidavit supporting the warrant that allowed FBI agents to search former President Donald Trump's Florida estate last week. So, getting a story is worth more than protecting the DOJ’s case....I hope the judge sees it differently. You guys need to fall back and let the investigation takes its course. Who cares what the public thinks right now. Trumpers are going make excuses and go after witnesses. What the hell is wrong with you? Too bad. Wait,like everyone else.

Media To Ask Judge To Release Trump Search Warrant Affidavit'The matter is one of utmost public interest, involving the actions of current and former government officials,” wrote an attorney some of the media companies. Any public interest in seeing what's in the affidavit is outweighed by the constitutional & jurisprudential interest in maintaining the integrity of the federal criminal investigation. It's irresponsible for the Fourth Estate to ask this.

Despite objections by the Justice Department, U./ Getty Images A federal judge ordered the Justice Department to provide a redacted copy of the affidavit used to justify the FBI search of former President Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence, saying he believed the affidavit should be partially released.te, making him an immediate subject of interest for Trump supporters.search of Mar-a-Lago , through the search warrant and"inventory list," but they want more, such as the probable cause affidavit (PC), which would provide much more information.

S. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart said he believes "there are portions of the affidavit that could be unsealed," referring to the sworn statement laying out the evidence for why there was probable cause to search Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort. U. He ordered the Justice Department to file a redacted version of the affidavit under seal by noon next Thursday, but said prosecutors will be given the opportunity to appeal if they don't agree with his proposed version. Register now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart ruled the DOJ must turn over the redacted version by next Thursday at noon.com Register Reinhart's order seemed to mark a victory for news outlets, who appeared in federal court in West Palm Beach on Thursday to persuade the judge that the public interest in the affidavit outweighs the benefits of keeping it sealed. Media attorneys pushed back against federal prosecutors' claims that the entire document should be kept from the public.

The search marked a significant escalation in one of the many federal and state investigations Trump is facing from his time in office and in private business. Reinhart also unsealed more minor documents containing general information at the hearing. The Republican former president has suggested he might run for the White House again in 2024, but has not made any commitment. The Justice Department opposes the release of the Mar-a-Lago affidavit, even in redacted form. Government lawyers also said the investigation is in an early stage. Jay Bratt, the head of the department's counterintelligence and export control section, told the judge on Thursday that releasing the affidavit is not in the public interest because it could harm the ongoing probe, which he described as still being in the "early" stages and involving highly sensitive grand jury material. "There is another public interest at stake and that is the public interest that criminal investigations are able to go forward unimpeded," he said. Multiple media organizations had asked the judge to unseal all documents related to the search, notably the affidavit laying out the reasoning and research. “Anything that doesn’t damage their investigation.

The search, which was approved by Reinhart on Aug. 5, is part of a federal investigation into whether Trump illegally removed documents when he left office in January 2021 after losing the presidential election to Democrat Joe Biden. The warrant, released last week, shows that FBI agents retrieved documents labeled classified, secret, top secret and confidential as well potential presidential records. The Justice Department is investigating violations of three laws, including a provision in the Espionage Act that prohibits the possession of national defense information and another statute that makes it a crime to knowingly destroy, conceal or falsify records with the intent to obstruct an investigation. read more Attorneys for several media outlets including The New York Times, the publisher of the Wall Street Journal, ABC News and NBC News told Reinhart on Thursday that the public's right to know and the historic significance of the search outweigh any arguments to keep the records sealed. The genesis of the investigation comes from an unlikely source: the National Archives. "The public could not have a more compelling interest in ensuring maximum transparency over this event," said Charles Tobin, one of the attorneys arguing for the media companies.

Trump has vocally made statements on social media calling on the court to unseal the unredacted version. Copyright 2022 NPR. 1/8 Former U.S.npr. President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort is seen in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S. Sign up for our newsletters! Keep up with all the latest news, arts and culture, and TV highlights from KPBS.

, February 8, 2021. REUTERS/Marco Bello/File Photo Read More However, his attorneys have not filed any such requests with the court seeking to unseal the records, which are likely to contain damaging information about Trump. Christina Bobb, the Trump attorney who signed the warrant materials on the day of the Aug. 8 search, appeared in the courtroom on Thursday to watch the proceedings. She left without making any statements to reporters.

The former president has repeatedly claimed the search was politically motivated, and his son Eric Trump told Fox News that his father intends to release surveillance tape showing the FBI searching Mar-a-Lago "at the right time." Trump has also tried to defend his actions, saying without providing evidence that he had a standing order to declassify the documents in question. However, none of the three laws cited by the Justice Department in the search warrant require a showing that the documents were in fact classified. Threats directed at FBI agents have increased since the raid. In Ohio last week, police shot an armed man dead after he tried to breach an FBI building.

A second man in Pennsylvania, meanwhile, has since been charged with making threats against FBI agents. Bratt said on Thursday that the two agents whose names appeared on a leaked copy of the unredacted warrant have also since received threats. In addition, he said, the department "is very concerned about the safety of the witnesses in the case." Reinhart has also faced a barrage of criticism from Trump's supporters, who have publicly assailed his decision to approve the search warrant. Trump's rhetoric against the FBI has caught on with Republican voters, 54% of whom say federal law enforcement officials behaved irresponsibly in the case, a Reuters/Ipsos poll found this week.

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