FBI, DOJ were at odds over Mar-a-Lago raid

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

When the decision on whether to stage a SWAT-style raid on President Trump’s home in search of government documents was looming last year, the FBI took the position that such an action was too combative.

However, prosecutors in the Department of Justice, which was well-known for its antagonism to Trump, including its involvement in the manufactured “Russia collusion” conspiracy theory that targeted Trump for years before it was debunked, wanted the flamboyant raid launched.

They won the argument.

A report from the Washington Post called the debate a “tense showdown” because officials believed there might be more classified documents there, and they wanted them back.

The report said prosecutors claimed evidence suggested Trump was knowingly concealing secret documents at his home. The report said they insisted on a “surprise raid” by the FBI.

However, the report said two senior FBI officials challenged that process as too combative. They wanted to work with Trump and his lawyers to search for documents.

“Prosecutors ultimately prevailed in that dispute, one of several previously unreported clashes in a tense tug of war between two arms of the Justice Department over how aggressively to pursue a criminal investigation of a former president,” the report said. “The FBI conducted an unprecedented raid on Aug. 8, recovering more than 100 classified items, among them a document describing a foreign government’s military defenses, including its nuclear capabilities.”

The report said FBI agents in Washington had urged caution, given the sensitivity of the situation. In fact, after Trump was raided, it was revealed that Joe Biden had classified documents in his home, apparently stashed next to his collectible sports car, as well as left behind at an office he formerly used. Prosecutors had been working with him to get them returned quietly.

The report said the witness account “reveals for the first time the degree of tension among law enforcement officials and behind-the-scenes deliberations as they wrestled with a national security case that has potentially far-reaching political consequences.”

“The disagreements stemmed in large part from worries among officials that whatever steps they took in investigating a former president would face intense scrutiny and second-guessing by people inside and outside the government. However, the agents, who typically perform the bulk of the investigative work in cases, and the prosecutors, who guide agents’ work and decide on criminal charges, ultimately focused on very different pitfalls, according to people familiar with their discussions.”

National Archives officials had for months been demanding boxes of Trump’s presidential documents be returned, and when they got a shipment of 15 boxes, they found some classified documents inside. They then assumed Trump had more.

The Washington Examiner pointed out that, “Justice Department officials eventually won the battle, with the FBI conducting an unprecedented search of the former president’s home on Aug. 8 that resulted in the discovery of more than 300 classified documents.”

It all got started when the “National Archives sent a referral to the Justice Department and the FBI to investigate missing classified records that they suspected were in Trump’s possession,” the Examiner said.

It explained, “FBI agents who were worried about the political blowback from such a high-profile situation, given that it was the home of a former president, and wanted to take a more cooperative approach. The agency particularly pointed to mistakes made in prior investigations of Hillary Clinton and Trump that led to partisan attacks, officials said.”

n fact, “Prosecutors learned that some agents were worried about the damage to their careers if they were found to be investigating Trump,” the report said.

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