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Justice Dept. releases redacted Mar-a-Lago search affidavit

Trump FBI
Posted at 11:49 AM, Aug 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-26 13:42:18-04

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department released a heavily blacked-out document explaining the justification for an FBI search of former President Donald Trump's Florida estate earlier this month, when agents removed top secret government records and other classified documents.

The affidavit states that the DOJ's investigation began due to a referral from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).

The administration said it received 15 boxes that were stored at Mar-a-Lago in January.

Inside those boxes, NARA said there were "newspapers, magazines, printed news articles, photos, miscellaneous print-outs, notes, presidential correspondence, personal and postpresidential records, and 'a lot of classified records.'"

Some of those classified documents had national security implications, according to the affidavit.

The affidavit describes repeated attempts by the government to secure any other materials stored at Mar-a-Lago.

Much of the section titled, "There is Probable Cause to Believe That Documents Containing Classified NDI and Presidential Records Remain at the Premises," is redacted.

The Justice Department redacted the information to protect details about witnesses and the scope of the investigation.

However, following that section, the FBI says it believes there's probable cause that evidence, contraband, fruits of crime, and other illegally possessed items will be found at the property.

Trump responded to the release of the affidavit on Friday. He was critical of the judge who signed off the search warrant.

"Judge Bruce Reinhart should never have allowed the break-in of my home," Trump said.

He also alleged the entire investigation is a "witch hunt."

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.