Trump team calls records probe ‘misguided’

Lawyers for former President Donald Trump have called Trump’s retention of top-secret documents at his Florida home a “storage dispute,” urging a judge to keep a directive in place that temporarily disrupted key aspects of the investigation. Criminal Laws of the Department of Justice.

Trump’s team also called the seized documents “so-called ‘confidential documents’,” suggesting that his lawyers do not accept the Justice Department’s claim that the FBI found highly sensitive and top-secret information. during his search from August 8 to March. -a-Lake.

Lawyers said Monday that there was no evidence that the documents had ever been disclosed to anyone and claimed that at least some of the documents belonged to Trump and not the Justice Department.

“This investigation into the 45th President of the United States is both unprecedented and misleading,” they wrote. “In what is an internal document archiving dispute that has gotten out of control, the government is unfairly trying to criminalize the 45th president’s possession of his presidential and personal archives.”

The 21-page filing highlights significant factual and legal disagreements between Trump’s attorneys and the U.S. government as the Justice Department seeks to continue its criminal investigation into the illegitimate concealment of national defense information in Mar-a- Lake and the potential obstruction of this investigation.

The investigation ran into a hurdle last week when U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon granted the Trump team’s request to appoint an independent arbitrator, also known as a special master, to review the seized documents. and for now prohibits the department from reviewing the documents for investigative purposes. purposes.

But on Monday, Trump’s lawyers said on their own initiative that Cannon shouldn’t allow the FBI to resume review of confidential records.

“By opposing any neutral review of the seized documents, the government seeks to block a reasonable first step towards restoring order from chaos and to increase public confidence in the integrity of the process,” they wrote. the lawyers.

In its statement on Monday, Trump’s team once again expressed a broad view of presidential power, stating that a president has “unrestricted access” to his presidential archives and absolute power to declassify any information without “approval. bureaucratic components of the executive branch “- although he did not say, as Trump argued, that he actually declassified them.

The Justice Department said Trump, as a former commander-in-chief, did not have the right to keep presidential documents. And the criminal laws that the department has used as the basis for his investigation, including one that criminalizes the intentional concealment of national defense information, don’t actually require documents to be classified.

In any case, the Justice Department says more than 100 documents with classification marks were found during the search last month. He released a photograph that agents took inside Mar-a-Lago depicting folders of documents marked as classified.

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