Donald Trump on Monday filed a lawsuit alleging his Fourth Amendment rights had been violated during the FBI raid on his Mar-a-Lago home in what he and his lawyers termed a “shockingly aggressive move.”
The motion alleges that documents were “illegally” seized in the raid and requests an order to appoint a special master to independently review the records obtained during the search.
“We have just filed a motion in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida strongly asserting my rights, including under the Fourth Amendment of our Constitution, regarding the unnecessary, unwarranted, and unAmerican Break-In by dozens of FBI agents, and others, of my home, Mar-a-Lago, in Palm Beach, Florida,” the former President said in a statement.
Trump claims the agents involved in the raid demanded security cameras be turned off and “took documents covered by attorney-client and executive privilege.”
NEW: Former President Trump files lawsuit over the search of his Mar-a-Lago estate, asking a judge to appoint a special master to review the materials seized by the government. https://t.co/RdYLvfum24 pic.twitter.com/UvphXZEcTZ
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) August 22, 2022
Trump Files Lawsuit Against FBI Over Raid
Trump’s lawsuit also demands a more detailed receipt of any property seized during the raid and requires the federal government to return any property outside the scope of the warrant.
Despite media attempts to portray it as a lie, Trump had alleged FBI agents scooped up his passports, which the Department of Justice (DOJ) later returned.
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The Political Insider reported late last week the allegation that the FBI raid on Trump’s home was specifically targeting the former President’s “private stash” of hidden documents, including those he believed would “exonerate” him from claims of Russia collusion.
“The true target was this private stash, which Justice officials feared Donald Trump might weaponize… documents that Trump had been collecting since early in his administration.”
“Including material that…would exonerate him of… Russian collusion.”https://t.co/JyCtfbKnc9
— Jeff Carlson (@themarketswork) August 17, 2022
Trump’s statement on the matter asserts any documents found in his home had been “previously declassified” and upon return should be done so without “plants,” an assertion that the FBI or DOJ would plant evidence to be used against him in any criminal investigation.
There is no indication such actions have been taken and officials have offered skepticism over claims that the former President could unilaterally declare documents taken outside the White House can simply be declared ‘declassified.’
“This Mar-a-Lago Break-In, Search, and Seizure was illegal and unconstitutional,” Trump writes, “and we are taking all actions necessary to get the documents back.”
Here is the filing: https://t.co/Emg9QzMEDZ
— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) August 22, 2022
Over 300 ‘Classified’ Documents
Reports have indicated Trump had more than 300 “classified” documents in his home after he departed the White House.
The Hill notes that “half” of those documents “were recovered in January by the National Archives,” while other evidence suggests the former President and his team had been cooperating in organizing their return for many months only to have communications break down at a later point.
A Newsweek report outlines how the President had boxes of documents shipped to Mar-a-Lago “by mistake” due to the chaotic transition process.
NEW: Trump’s filing is replete with his political bombast but also confirms key elements of the timeline:
-DOJ subpoenaed for records in May
-DOJ subpoenaed for camera footage in June
Notably, no Trump lawyers described their own interactions w DOJ. https://t.co/99fmCxk9J6
— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) August 22, 2022
Top Republican lawmakers in Iowa suggest the FBI raid on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home will only serve as a catalyst to attract more energized Republican voters in the midterms and beyond.
“I think we need some serious answers from the FBI and the Department of Justice about the raid,” Senator Chuck Grassley told Fox News.
“Americans are concerned that these entities are going to start politically targeting people, and we need to make sure that’s not happening,” he added.
“I think everybody wants justice to be carried out, but we don’t want to see these agencies be weaponized for political purposes.”
The lawsuit filed by the former President’s lawyers also states that the government “has long treated President Donald J. Trump unfairly.”
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