REVEALED: FBI agent in charge of Trump Mar-a-Lago raid said he had ‘strong concerns’ about operation, says bureau didn’t get consent for agents to search and it was ‘very unusual’ for DC to lead Florida probe in testimony to Republicans
- D’Antuono laid out several abnormalities in the raid, including first that the Miami field office did not handle it
- He also noted that the FBI would not wait for Trump’s attorney to show up before conducting the search
- Trump has been indicted on seven federal charges regarding his handling of classified documents
Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan said Friday an FBI agent had voiced ‘strong concerns’ and revealed ‘several unusual features’ in the Department of Justice’s raid on Mar-a-Lago.
The DOJ indicted Donald Trump on Thursday on charges related to his handling of classified documents. Three days earlier the committee did a transcribed interview with Steven D’Antuono, the former assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Washington field office.
D’Antuono, one of the most senior agents in charge’ of the raid told the committee he was frustrated the FBI was going to be left ‘holding the bag again’ with the August 2022 search of Mar-a-Lago.
Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan said Friday an FBI agent had voiced ‘strong concerns’ and revealed ‘several unusual features’ in the Department of Justice’s raid on Mar-a-Lago
D’Antuono laid out several abnormalities in the raid, including first that the Miami field office did not handle it – headquarters instead assigned the Washington, D.C., Field Office to carry out the warrant.
D’Antuono said he had ‘absolutely no idea’ why the decision was made. He also noted that the FBI would not wait for Trump’s attorney to show up before conducting the search. He said the FBI should have tried to work with the attorney to get consent to search the residence before conducting the search.
D’Antuono said he believed either Attorney General Merrick Garland or FBI Director Christopher Wray made the decision to seek the warrant ‘despite opposition from the line agents’ working the case.
D’Antuono also noted the FBI did not assign a U.S. attorney’s office to the matter.
Trump has been indicted on seven federal charges – including conspiracy, a violation of the Espionage Act, and classified documents retention – related to the documents he took with him after the left the White House.
Trump’s most recent charge – which he has called a persecution – marks the first time in U.S. history that a former president has faced federal charges.
As Republicans insist the indictment is politically motivated, the White House insisted Friday that it had no prior knowledge of the indictment and President Biden said he had not spoken to Garland about the matter.
‘I have not spoken to him at all and I’m not going to speak with him. And I have no comment on that.’
The charges against Trump include: conspiracy to obstruct justice; withholding a document or record; corruptly concealing a document or record; and concealing a document in a federal investigation.
Some of the charges have a maximum sentence of 20 years.