Justice Department has finished privilege review of Mar-a-Lago documents

Mar-a-Lago, the Florida home of former President Donald Trump, is seen on Aug. 8 from across the intracoastal after the FBI executed a search warrant for documents that he took home after his presidency. Photo By Gary I Rothstein/UPI

Aug. 29 (UPI) — The U.S. Justice Department has finished its privilege review of the documents seized from former President¬†Donald Trump‘s residence at Mar-a-Lago and flagged some for possible attorney-client privilege issues.

The disclosure that the review is complete was made in a court filing Monday regarding a request from Trump’s lawyers for the appointment of an outside expert known as a special master to review the seized documents.

The privilege review team has “identified a limited set of materials that potentially contain attorney-client privileged information” and has “completed its review of those materials,” the Justice Department wrote in its Monday filing.

The Justice Department said it is “in the process of following the procedures set forth in paragraph 84 of the search warrant affidavit to address potential privilege disputes, if any.”

The government said that it is also currently facilitating a classification review of any classified information in the documents with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

“ODNI is also leading an intelligence community assessment of the potential risk to national security that would result from the disclosure of these materials,” the court filing Monday reads.

The filing came after U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon on Saturday indicated in a ruling that she was inclined to grant Trump’s request for the special master and gave the Justice Department until Tuesday to present its arguments.

Cannon had also asked the Justice Department for an update on its review of the documents seized and a more detailed listing of the documents in the trove.

The latest court filing could make Trump’s request for the special master unnecessary.

On Friday, the Justice Department¬†released a partly redacted search warrant¬†affidavit that lays out why FBI agents showed up at Trump’s residence in Florida seeking classified material.

The search was conducted as part of an ongoing criminal investigation involving Trump taking boxes of White House records when he left the White House in 2021.

Presidents are required to turn over many documents to the National Archives and Records Administration when they leave office.

The affidavit cited multiple federal laws that may have been violated, including a statute that makes it a crime for taking documents related to national defense and failing to return the documents to the U.S. government.


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