Far-right threats mount against US authorities

After a US federal judge unsealed documents related to the FBI's search of former president Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida, fears have grown over increased threats of violence. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart unsealed the search warrant and attachments Aug. 12, following a motion from the Department of Justice (DoJ). Since unsealing the documents, Reinhart has become the target of violent and anti-Semitic threats, with his personal information, including home address, shared across Twitter and far-right platforms. Threats against Reinhart have prompted the federal judiciary to renew calls for Congress to pass legislation aimed at increasing security for judges.

According to the unsealed warrant and attachments, the FBI seized 11 sets of classified documents in the Aug. 8 search. They also revealed that the DoJ is investigating Trump for violating federal laws. Trump has said that the documents were declassified, although nothing suggests there is any bureaucratic record of this.

Media outlets have confirmed that the FBI and Department of Homeland Security released a joint intelligence bulletin after the warrant was unsealed, noting an increase in threats against FBI officials. On Aug. 13, armed protesters gathered outside the FBI offices in Phoenix, Ariz., ultimately dispersing without incident. On Aug. 11, an individual was killed after attempting to enter the FBI office in Cincinnati, Ohio, armed with an AR-15-style rifle and a nail gun.

From Jurist, Aug. 15. Used with permission.

Note: The unsealed court papers show that FBI agents seized one box containing "Various classified/TS/SCI documents." That’s shorthand for "Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information," the type of material that the government normally requires to be read only in a protected room by people with high-level security clearances. These included classified documents related to nuclear weapons, the Washington Post reported, citing sources familiar with the investigation.

On his Truth Social platform, Trump retorted that "Nuclear weapons is a hoax, just like Russia, Russia, Russia was a hoax," referring to then-special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia.  (The HillNBC, Bloomberg)

We have been monitoring the post-presidency investigations into Donald Trump here.

DoJ releases redacted Mar-a-Lago search warrant affidavit

The US Department of Justice on Aug. 26 released a redacted version of the affidavit seeking a search warrant for former president Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence. The DOJ also released a memo outlining the reasons for the proposed redactions. (Jurist)

DoJ: Trump deliberately concealed classified documents

The US Department of Justice (DoJ) said in a court filing Aug. 30 that it had evidence that classified documents were deliberately concealed from the FBI, which prompted the search of Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence.

The filing comes after an order from Judge Aileen Cannon for the DoJ to respond to Trump's motion to appoint a "special master" to oversee review of the seized material. In its response, the DoJ argued that Trump lacks standing to seek judicial relief as the records do not belong to him. The response stated that appointment of a special master would be "unnecessary" and "inappropriate." (Jurist)

Judge grants Trump's request for 'special master'

A federal judge has granted former President Donald Trump's request to appoint a "special master" to review materials that the FBI seized from Mar-a-Lago last month. The decision, from Trump-appointed District Judge Aileen Cannon, is a significant victory for the former President, who has railed against the Biden administration and Justice Department since the search was executed four weeks ago. (CNN)

Federal judge selected as special master in Trump investigation

Raymond Dearie, US District Court judge for the Eastern District of New York, was appointed on Sept. 15 special master as part of the Justice Department’s ongoing investigation into former president Trump. (Jurist)

Court allows DoJ to resume examination of Mar-a-Lago documents

The US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit on Sept. 21 held that the Department of Justice can resume its examination of classified documents seized from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence. The court's ruling stayed a Sept. 5 preliminary injunction from a Florida federal district judge overseeing the criminal probe. (Jurist)