- The FBI raided Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home to retrieve classified documents in August 2022.
- Prior to the investigation, FBI agents were reluctant to conduct a surprise raid, according to the Washington Post.
- Some agents wanted to believe Trump’s lawyer’s claims that they had already conducted a thorough investigation.
Two months before the FBI conducted an unprecedented raid on a former president’s home, seizing more than 100 classified documents, some agents wanted to believe that Donald Trump’s lawyers had already conducted a thorough search of the Mar-a-Lago compound in Palm Beach. of Florida. .
A report Wednesday by the Washington Post revealed how FBI agents and Justice Department prosecutors clashed over how to proceed with a criminal investigation into Trump’s handling of classified records in the months leading up to the raid on Mar- a-Lago on August 8, 2022. .
While some FBI officials pushed to get Trump’s consent to search his assets, other agents wanted to shut down the criminal probe entirely by early June after Trump’s lawyers claimed they had conducted a “diligent investigation” into the Mar-a- Lagos, according to people in the know. with the discussions and who spoke to The Post on condition of anonymity to talk about a sensitive investigation.
On June 3, 2022, some FBI agents and a Justice Department official gathered at Mar-a-Lago to retrieve the remaining classified documents in Trump’s possession. Christina Bobb, one of Trump’s lawyers, signed a letter stating that a thorough investigation was completed, according to the court filing.
That allegation convinced some with the FBI that the criminal case should be dropped, people with knowledge of the matter told the Post.
A senior law enforcement official told the publication that closing the investigation was not reviewed by FBI leadership and would not have been approved.
Despite doubts from some FBI agents about the investigation, prosecutors were adamant about gathering more evidence and told the FBI to conduct more witness interviews and obtain Mar-a-Lago surveillance footage, The Post reported.
Video obtained by investigators showed someone removing boxes from an area where documents were stored, alarming prosecutors, The Post reported. The New York Times previously reported that security footage showed a longtime Trump employee moving boxes from a warehouse before and after the DOJ issued a subpoena in May requesting all the classified documents.
Legal experts told The Post that FBI agents may not have been able to retrieve the classified documents if the criminal case had been dismissed earlier in June.
The FBI declined to comment.