Team Trump refuses special master's order to list which Mar-a-Lago documents Trump 'declassified'
Attorneys for former President Donald Trump on Monday responded to their special master's Saturday request to identify which top secret documents that were among the hoarded trove at Trump's Mar-a-Lago compound that Trump claims he declassified before he quietly removed them from the White House.
Senior Judge Raymond J. Dearie of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York is tasked with reviewing the classification and executive privilege statuses of the highly sensitive materials that were seized by the Federal Bureau of Investigation during its August 8th search warrant execution at the Palm Beach, Florida club, which seasoned national security professionals have warned has been a "magnet for spies."
Dearie was hired last week by Southern District of Florida Judge Aileen Cannon, a Trump appointee whose favoritism of Trump has drawn scorn and condemnation by legal experts.
To date, no independent testimony has been presented to corroborate Trump's assertion. And despite his repeated insistence that he declassified some or all of the documents, Trump and his lawyers are declining to reveal specifics to Dearie.
"The Draft Plan requires that the Plaintiff disclose specific information regarding declassification to the Court and to the Government. We respectfully submit that the time and place for affidavits or declarations would be in connection with a Rule 41 motion that specifically alleges declassification as a component of its argument for return of property," Trump's counselors wrote.
"Otherwise," they continued, "the Special Master process will have forced the Plaintiff to fully and specifically disclose a defense to the merits of any subsequent indictment without such a requirement being evident in the District Court’s order."
It is also notable that whatever statements are filed with the court are done so under penalty of perjury.
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