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Former President Donald Trump’s legal team reacted for the first time to the heavily redacted FBI affidavit released Friday, saying what was not redacted raises “more questions than answers.”
Trump’s lawyers weighed in on the affidavit in a court filing Friday in which they again requested that a neutral third party be appointed to oversee the Department of Justice handling of evidence.
The attorneys cited the unsealing of the redacted affidavit as a reason for a judge to grant its motion for a “special master.”
“The Redacted Affidavit underscores why this Motion should be granted, as it provides almost no information that would allow Movant to understand why the raid took place, or what was taken from his home,” Trump’s legal team wrote.
Approximately 20 pages of the 38-page document were either significantly or fully redacted. Twenty-four pages had at least some information blacked out.
“The few lines that are unredacted raise more questions than answers. For instance, Paragraph 3 states, in pertinent part, as one of the bases for probable cause, that there ‘are Presidential records subject to record retention requirements currently remain[ing] at the PREMISES,’” the team argues.
Significant redactions were expected, given the Justice Department’s argument about the sensitivity of the case.
Trump’s legal team continued, “This provides the deeply troubling prospect that President Trump’s home was raided under a pretense of a suspicion that Presidential records were on his property – even though the Presidential Records Act is not a criminally-enforceable statute.”
The affidavit refers to nearly 200 documents with classified markings that Trump had previously handed over. It said that the FBI in May inspected 15 boxes of documents Trump gave to the National Archives and Records Administration earlier this year, which contained a trove of documents marked classified.
“A preliminary triage of the documents with classification markings revealed the following approximate numbers: 184 unique documents bearing classification markings, including 67 documents marked as CONFIDENTIAL, 92 documents marked as SECRET, and 25 documents marked as TOP SECRET,” the affidavit said. “Based on my training and experience, I know that documents classified at these levels typically contain NDI.”
Fox News’ Tyler Olson contributed to this report.