According to reports, employees at Mar-a-Lago, the resort owned by former President Donald Trump, allegedly relocated boxes containing classified documents shortly before federal prosecutors arrived to collect them in response to a subpoena.
On June 2, according to the Washington Post, two employees affiliated with former President Trump, including his long-time valet Walt Nauta, brought boxes of documents to a basement storage room. This action took place just hours before officials from the Justice Department arrived at Mar-a-Lago, the Florida resort owned by Trump, to execute a subpoena. Additionally, the report states that special counsel Jack Smith possesses evidence indicating that Trump had classified materials openly displayed in his office at Mar-a-Lago, occasionally sharing them with visitors.
The report does not specify the objective behind Trump’s decision to move the documents into the storage room while officials were preparing to retrieve classified materials.
Trump’s legal team permitted investigators to view boxes stored in a room, yet they prohibited them from examining the contents within.
Regardless of the underlying motives, relocating documents after receiving a subpoena could potentially be seen as evidence of obstructing justice.
If Trump indeed displayed classified documents to unauthorized individuals, it could potentially violate the Espionage Act and laws governing the handling of classified information.
According to the report, there was a “dress rehearsal” conducted by Trump’s staff at Mar-a-Lago, wherein classified documents were moved from one location to another, even before the former president was subpoenaed in May 2022 to return all such documents.
Prosecutors have already questioned Nauta and the other Mar-a-Lago worker, but it seems they are not cooperating as witnesses for the prosecution.
Recent reports indicate that an unidentified individual, described as a former insider at Mar-a-Lago associated with Donald Trump, has reportedly turned against the former president and is cooperating with prosecutors. The exact identity and level of seniority of this individual remain unknown.
Following a visit by prosecutors on June 3, federal officials expressed concerns that Trump had not fully complied with the subpoena’s requirement to return all classified documents. Consequently, a federal judge granted a search warrant, leading FBI agents to discover over 100 additional documents in various locations, including a storage room at Mar-a-Lago.
Meanwhile, the grand jury overseeing the documents case has not convened for three weeks, marking the longest hiatus since the investigation, led by Prosecutor Smith, began last year. Reports suggest that Smith is in the final stages of the case and is expected to make a decision on whether to press charges against Trump within a few weeks at most.
In response to the impending decision, Trump’s legal team has sent a strongly worded letter demanding a meeting with Attorney General Merrick Garland, likely in an attempt to disrupt the investigation.
It is worth noting that Prosecutor Smith is also separately investigating Trump’s actions in relation to his attempt to overturn the 2020 election, including the events leading up to the January 6 attack on the Capitol.
Source of Story ; The Washington Post