FBI seized nearly 200,000 pages of Trump documents at Mar-a-Lago

Workers move boxes onto a truck on West Executive Avenue between the White House and the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, DC, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021.

Jim Lo Scalzo | Bloomberg | Getty Images

FBI agents seized nearly 200,000 pages of documents from the Florida residence of former President Donald Trump, his attorneys have revealed in a new court filing.

FBI agents were previously known to have taken approximately 11,000 documents from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach during a raid on August 8 as part of a criminal investigation into his removal of government documents from the White House when he left office in early 2021. More than 100 of the documents were classified or highly classified.

Wednesday night’s filing in Brooklyn federal court by Trump’s lawyers was the first time the vast number of pages that make up these documents have been released.

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The filing says the Justice Department is ‘overly optimistic and aggressive’ about meeting deadlines for digitizing documents seized by an outside data provider and later reviewing them by a so-called special handler in the case. .

This special master, U.S. District Judge Raymond Dearie, was appointed by another federal judge to review the seized records to determine which, if any, are protected by attorney-client privilege or executive privilege. and exempt from use in the criminal investigation.

Trump’s attorneys say mid-October is a “realistic final production deadline,” contrary to the DOJ’s position that a vendor could complete the scanning process by October 7.

A man walks past boxes that have been moved out of the Eisenhower Executive Office building just outside the West Wing inside the White House complex, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, in Washington .

Gerald Herbert | PA

Last week, a federal appeals court allowed the DOJ to resume use of classified documents seized at Mar-a-Lago as part of its investigation.

The DOJ investigation hinges on the fact that, by law, government records in the possession of a president must be turned over to the National Archives and Records Administration when they leave office.

The DOJ argues that Trump is not entitled to claim executive privilege over any government documents that were in his possession because he is no longer president.

Calvin W. Soper