A federal judge directed that an independent special master is appointed to review records taken by FBI during the raid at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home. The Justice Department was also instructed to stop further review of the material.
Fox News reported on the fact that FBI agents raided boxes containing documents protected by attorney-client privilege.
Attorney-client privilege protects client communications. It is unclear if records include communications between ex-presidents and private attorneys, White House counsel during Trump administration, or any combination thereof.
Cannon’s Monday Order temporarily halts the Department of Justice review of these documents, because they had been “tainted or “filtered by” the Department of Justice.
The order “shall be in no way hinder the Classification Review or Intelligence Assessment by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (“ODNI”) as described in the Government’s Notice of Recept of Priorinary Order. ”
Cannon was asked by Trump’s legal team last month to appoint a remarkable master after the unprecedented search of his property. They claimed that the Privacy Review Team of the DOJ should not be considered the final arbiter in determining whether actions were taken in such a high-profile case.
“We need to take a deep breath.” At a hearing, Christopher Kise, Trump’s attorney, stated that these records are from the president and were kept at a place which was often used for work during his presidency.
Last week, federal prosecutors claimed that the appointment of an expert master would slow down their investigation. Trump claimed that he didn’t have standing to request the appointment and that he was not entitled to possess classified documents.
A more detailed list of documents taken from Trump’s house showed that the FBI seized many highly classified documents as well as empty folders with classified markings.
Cannon announced her decision after Trump’s Thursday hearing. ”
Cannon did indicate, however, that she was open to the idea of appointing an extraordinary master.
Cannon stated last week that she had “preliminary intent” to grant Trump his request.
The government conducted a search of Trump’s home in response to what it considered a violation of federal laws. 18 USC 793 — Gathering and transmitting defense information;18 USC2071 — Concealing or Removal of Mutilation;18 USC 1519 — Destruction or Alteration of Federal records.