DOJ Claims Trump Team Attempted to ‘Obstruct’ Investigation

Filing gives context on raid.

QUICK FACTS:
  • The Department of Justice (DOJ) claimed in a court document that former President Donald Trump attempted to “obstruct” its investigation into potential document handling irregularities.
  • The court filing was submitted on Tuesday night and offers more context to the justification the DOJ believed they had for the raid on Mar-a-Lago.
  • The filing appears to cast doubt on Trump’s team’s cooperation with documents “with classification markings.”
  • The August 8 raid came months after a certification letter that “any and all” of the documents the former president had pertaining to DOJ investigations had been given to authorities.
  • The filing also argues that the judge should deny Trump’s request for a “Special Master” to be appointed to independently review the documents taken during the raid.
ACCUSATIONS FROM THE FILING:
  • “Through further investigation, the FBI uncovered multiple sources of evidence indicating that the response to the May 11 grand jury subpoena was incomplete and that classified documents remained at the Premises, notwithstanding the sworn certification made to the government on June 3,” DOJ Counterintelligence Chief Jay Bratt wrote in the filing.
  • “In particular, the government developed evidence that a search limited to the Storage Room would not have uncovered all the classified documents at the Premises. The government also developed evidence that government records were likely concealed and removed from the Storage Room and that efforts were likely taken to obstruct the government’s investigation,” Bratt added.
  • “Even if the Court had jurisdiction to entertain Plaintiff’s claims, appointment of a special master is unnecessary and would significantly harm important governmental interests, including national security interests,” the DOJ argued in its filing. “Appointment of a special master is disfavored in a case such as this.”
BACKGROUND:
  • Following news of the raid, the government accused Trump of keeping classified documents, despite requests by the White House to have them returned.
  • After searching several areas of the residence, including living quarters, the FBI removed 15 boxes of documents they claim that they “belong to the United States, not to the former President.”