Former President Donald Trump’s legal team is considering whether to release the search warrant and inventory of materials seized at Mar-a-Lago before a federal judge rules on the matter, according to one of Trump’s Florida-based attorneys, Lindsey Halligan.
Earlier Thursday, Attorney General Merrick Garland announced that the Justice Department had filed a request to unseal the warrant and related documents, “without objection from the former President.” Trump has until 3 p.m. Friday to respond.
His legal team is also discussing whether to release videos and photos of the search, Halligan said. Two sources familiar with Trump’s legal strategy said that before executing the warrant, FBI agents asked that Mar-a-Lago’s private security cameras be turned off. Trump’s team refused to comply.
The US Secret Service, which has a constant presence at the former president’s home, was not involved in the dispute over the cameras because the private club owns and controls the cameras, not the government.
It’s not clear what any video possibly captured by Mar-a-Lago’s cameras would show. According to Halligan, there were surveillance cameras in Trump’s office, but not in all areas that were searched. She also said there are photos of FBI employees on the premises.
The former president’s lawyers have a copy of the search warrant and a so-called “vague” account of what was stolen, according to the two sources. The search warrant was described by the sources to CBS News as a “bare” document with few details about why it was issued or what the FBI was looking for.
Many items seized in the search were generically listed as “boxes” or “documents” – for example, “Box 1 – Documents”.
The president’s attorneys plan to ask the government for a detailed account of what was removed and the arguments the government put forward to the federal judge to justify an arrest warrant. So far, Trump’s lawyers are not planning legal action to force the production of these items.
The government has not provided Trump’s attorneys with the affidavit underlying the search warrant, which is standard practice.
in one late night post On his social media page, former President Trump said he would not oppose the release of the warrant and, in fact, “encourages the release” of documents relating to what he calls “un-American, unjustified and unnecessary.” Assault and Burglary” called my home in Palm Beach.”