Time to negotiate is 'long gone': Former official explains why the FBI raided Trump
Former FBI official Frank Figliuzzi walked MSNBC viewers through what the Miami Field Office had to do to execute today's search warrant on Mar-a-Lago.
"High degree of certainty that it is related to the national archives documents," he told MSNBC
"So, Jason, yeah, not only did I spend 25 years in the FBI but I spent a significant portion of it in the Miami field office which is responsible, of course, for West Palm Beach and the Mar-a-Lago location," explained Figliuzzi. "So, look, not a lot of time right now for internal introspection going on in the Miami field office and/or any other agents from other field offices that came in but rather let's do this job right. They clearly understand the public scrutiny that will be involved. The gravity of the situation and, of course, what's coming next, which will be endless rhetoric from Donald Trump about how horrible the FBI is and how this is a targeted fishing expedition. What we don't know, of course, is really what the substance of this is."
He went on to say that if it was connected to Jan. 6 it is unclear. However, the New York Times and CNN have sources confirming that the raid focused on the National Archives documents. Figiluzzi also confirmed it with as much certainty as he could.
"If you want, if you haven't done this already, to just walk through the process of a federal agent obtaining a search warrant," he continued. "If you want to just go through that and what it means and what it doesn't mean so it simply means that the agents decided and, of course, at this level when you're talking about a former president, this will be cleared at the highest level of the FBI, U.S. Department of Justice and likely crossed the desk of the attorney general of the United States and you have to go to a United States magistrate with a prosecutor and assistant U.S. Attorney and say, 'we have evidence, probable cause, that a federal crime has been violated, and, number two, that evidence of that crime is located in the location we wish to search.' That's the big one, right?"
The magistrate or judge would then look at that and decide how they would move forward.
"Imagine the federal judge or magistrate that may have gotten out of bed this morning," said Figliuzzi. "I've done that before, right, and he's reading through a lengthy affidavit, and he's got to like have his coffee or her coffee and go through it and say holy cow, that's Mar-a-Lago."
He explained the irony of Trump attacking former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for her treatment of classified emails. But when he had explicitly top-secret and classified documents, he paraded them around from the White House to Mar-a-Lago.
"I understand he's out of town, maybe he will have his aides try to do something. But rest assured, they will keep the site secure and free from anyone tampering with what they are doing," said Figliuzzi. "No one will be allowed to destroy any evidence. That won't happen."
He went on to confirm, "I have a medium to high degree of certainty that this at least is focused in part on national archives case...The time to negotiate and turn everything over is long gone, and now we've reached the point where agents are convincing a judge that they have evidence of a crime."