Donald Trump: FBI searches former president’s Mar-a-Lago estate | US News

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    The FBI has searched Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate, the former president has announced.

    A senior US official said the FBI was present at the property in in Palm Beach, Florida “for the majority of the day”.

    It comes as the Justice Department has been investigating the discovery of boxes of records containing classified information that were taken to Mar-a-Lago after Mr Trump’s presidency had ended.

    Meanwhile, a separate investigation related to efforts by Mr Trump allies to undo the results of the 2020 presidential election and the January 6 2021 riot at the US Capitol has also been intensifying in Washington.

    Donald Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Dallas on 6 August 2022
    Donald Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Dallas on 6 August 2022

    It was Mr Trump who initially released the details of the operation.

    “These are dark times for our Nation, as my beautiful home, Mar-A-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, is currently under siege, raided, and occupied by a large group of FBI agents,” he said in a statement.

    “Nothing like this has ever happened to a President of the United States before.

    “After working and cooperating with the relevant Government agencies, this unannounced raid on my home was not necessary or appropriate.

    Analysis: David Blevins, Sky correspondent, in Washington

    Not since the Watergate scandal that brought down President Nixon half a century ago has America seen anything like this.

    President Trump claims FBI agents flooded his Florida home and even broke into a safe while executing a search warrant.

    He was not in Mar-a-Lago at the time and is understood to be at Trump Towers, his New York residence.

    The White House says it received no notice. The raid is likely to have been approved by the Attorney General.

    Multiple sources are linking the search warrant to classified documents but the FBI is making no comment at this stage.

    To obtain a search warrant, prosecutors must establish probable cause of crime and then persuade the authorities it is justified.

    A prosecutor gives a sworn affidavit to an FBI agent and it is then carefully considered by a federal judge.

    President Trump is being investigated over claims he mishandled classified information and over the January 6 raid on the Capitol.

    But no one really expected to see FBI agents raiding the home of a former President of the United States.

    He was quick to politicise the search, claiming such an “assault” could only take place in a “Third World country”.

    “It is prosecutorial misconduct, the weaponization of the Justice System, and an attack by Radical Left Democrats who desperately don’t want me to run for President in 2024, especially based on recent polls, and who will likewise do anything to stop Republicans and Conservatives in the upcoming Midterm Elections.”

    However, the government official denied Mr Trump’s version of events saying the use of the word “raid” is not appropriate in this context noting they are “not breaking down doors here”.

    It was described as an orderly execution of a search warrant.

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