Attorney General Merrick Garland Says Trump Search Warrant Will Be Unsealed, Blasts ‘Unfounded Attacks’ on Law Enforcement

 

Attorney General Merrick Garland said the Justice Department is unsealing the search warrant and property receipt for the raid on former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence at a press conference Thursday.

The ball is now in Trump’s court. The documents will be made public by the Justice Department unless the former president objects and seeks to block their release.

Garland said he “personally approved” the search warrant, and the Justice Department “does not take this decision lightly.” The statement contradicts previous reporting from Newsweek that he did not approve the raid.

He also rebutted “unfounded attacks” on law enforcement in the wake of the search.

“I will not stand by silently when their integrity is unfairly attacked,” he said. “The men and women of the FBI and the Justice Department are dedicated, patriotic public servants.”

According to a Thursday report from CNN, the search warrant was executed because investigators obtained evidence that Trump was withholding classified documents previously sought:

The FBI search at Mar-a-Lago this week came months after federal investigators served an earlier grand jury subpoena and took away sensitive national security documents from former President Donald Trump’s property during a June meeting, people familiar with the matter tell CNN.

Investigators executed Monday’s search in part because they had developed evidence, including from at least one witness, that there were potentially classified documents still remaining at the Palm Beach, Florida, property months after the National Archives arranged for the retrieval of 15 boxes of documents that included classified information in January of this year, a person briefed on the matter said.

The Justice Department would not typically speak out about an investigation until bringing charges. Yet calls for more information and transparency reached a fever pitch this week after the FBI raided Mar-a-Lago on Monday, drawing baseless allegations from Trump and his allies that the former president was being corruptly targeted.

Trump responded to the statement from Garland in a post on Truth Social:

My attorneys and representatives were cooperating fully, and very good relationships had been established. The government could have had whatever they wanted, if we had it. They asked us to put an additional lock on a certain area – DONE! Everything was fine, better than that of most previous Presidents, and then, out of nowhere and with no warning, Mar-a-Lago was raided, at 6:30 in the morning, by VERY large numbers of agents, and even “safecrackers.” They got way ahead of themselves. Crazy!

He also accused the FBI of having “rummaged” through Melania Trump’s closet, leaving it “a relative mess”:

“Just learned that agents went through the First Lady’s closets and rummaged through her clothing and personal items. Surprisingly, left area in a relative mess,” Trump wrote. “Wow!”

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