Explaining why classified documents were still being found at Trump's properties two years after he was president, his attorney in this case blamed the White House procedure for handling sensitive material when an administration leaves office -- equating the situation involving his client to those of former Vice President Mike Pence and President Joe Biden.
The attorney did confirm that additional classified documents were found during a search in December and turned over to the Justice Department. As well as a laptop containing classified information, allegedly given to an aide.
The New York Times had reported in October that Justice Department officials had told the former president’s lawyers that they believed he might have more classified materials that were not returned in response to a subpoena issued in May. The F.B.I. searched Mar-a-Lago, Mr. Trump’s private club and residence in Florida, in August for additional classified documents and other presidential records.
Four properties have been searched, including a storage unit, Trump’s golf club in Bedminster, N.J., Trump Tower in New York; and Mar-a-Lago. All four were found to have classified documents.
The DOJ is investigating the former president’s handling of thousands of government documents, including more than 300 classified ones, that were taken from the White House at the end of his term and were found at Mar-a-Lago. A Special Prosecutor is also seeking to determine whether Mr. Trump obstructed the government’s repeated efforts to retrieve the materials.
Trump’s lawyer in this case told CNN in an exclusive interview, “We’ve tried to do searches of all the relevant places, and anytime we’ve found anything, we’ve immediately turned it over,” painting his client as cooperative in the ongoing criminal probe.