The highly redacted 38-page Mar-a-Lago search warrant affidavit released by the Department of Justice on Friday suggests a former top aide to Donald Trump and California GOP Rep. Devin Nunes is in the crosshairs of the investigation, according to a former federal prosecutor.
On page 17, the affidavit details some of the documents recovered from Mar-a-Lago and says, “a preliminary triage of the documents with classification markings revealed the following approximate numbers: 184 unique documents bearing classification markings, including 67 documents marked as CONFIDENTIAL, 92 documents marked as SECRET, and 25 documents marked as TOP SECRET. Further, the FBI agents observed markings reflecting the following compartments/dissemination controls: HCS, FISA, ORCON, NOFORN, and SI.”
Two pages later, in paragraph 53, the affidavit noted a May 5, 2022 Breitbart article titled, “Documents at Mar-a-Lago marked ‘classified’ were already declassified, Kash Patel says.”
The affidavit says, “Patel alleged that such reports were misleading because [former president of the United States] had declassified the materials at issue.”
The next sentence is redacted. And then the entirety of the next seven paragraphs are redacted.
The next item not redacted is paragraph 61 when the affidavit says, “On June 8, 2022 DOJ counsel sent [Trump’s lawyer] a letter, which reiterated that the premises are not authorized to store classified information and requested the preservation of the storage room and boxes that had been moved from the White House to the premises.”
Mueller investigation chief prosecutor Andrew Weissmann, who also headed DOJ’s criminal fraud section, analyzed the importance of language and timeline.
“Note, the redacted affidavit makes clear DOJ is not buying Kash Patel story that Trump declassified the docs while POTUS,” Weissmann wrote. “After noting Kash 5/2022 claim, the affidavit continues to call the docs ‘classified… Import: Trump AND Kash are in DOJ crosshairs.'”