WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- The special master assigned to review the Mar-a-Lago documents has ordered former President Trump’s legal team to back up claims that the FBI may have planted evidence during their search.
- In an interview with Fox News’s Sean Hannity on Wednesday, Trump asserted the allegations.
- Neither Trump nor his attorneys have provided any evidence to support such claims.
The special master overseeing the review of the Mar-a-Lago documents is asking former President Donald Trump’s lawyers to back up claims that the FBI planted evidence on his Florida home during the August search.
Judge Raymond Dearie, the special master selected, told Trump’s legal team that they would need to submit a sworn declaration that details “a list of any specific items set forth in the [FBI’s] detailed property inventory that plaintiff asserts were not seized from the premises.”
Trump made the allegations two days after Mar-a-Lago was searched.
“Everyone was asked to leave the premises, they wanted to be alone,” Trump wrote in a post on Truth Social, “without any witnesses to see what they were doing, taking or, hopefully not, ‘planting.’”
In an interview with Fox News’s Sean Hannity on Wednesday, Trump again claimed that the FBI may have planted evidence during the search.
“The problem that you have is they go into rooms — they won’t let anybody near — they wouldn’t even let them in the same building. Did they drop anything on those piles? Or did they do it later?” he said.
Neither Trump nor his attorneys have provided any evidence to support such allegations.
Dearie also asked the lawyers to list a “description of contents or location within the premises where the item was found is incorrect” and to break down any property they claim was taken during the search but not listed among the FBI’s inventory.
This is the second time the special master has asked Trump’s team to back its claims.
On Monday’s filing, Trump’s lawyers indicated Dearie had asked them to explain whether the former president had in fact ever declassified the confidential records seized from his home.
Earlier legal filings from Trump hinted he may have done so but failed to fully make the claim.
Dearie was visibly frustrated with both Trump’s legal team and the Justice Department during Tuesday’s conference.
Trump attorney James Trusty told Dearie that Trump’s attorneys were “not in the position” to explain the allegation, as they would only do so in a motion to recover the property if criminal charges are brought.
“Well, you did bring the lawsuit and make that claim,” Dearie responded. “You can’t have your cake and eat it,” he added.