Trump has rejected a special master’s request to testify in court about whether the DOJ’s inventory is accurate



CNN

Former President Donald Trump is pushing back against a plan for a special master overseeing the review of documents seized at Mar-a-Lago, which would require Trump to testify in court about whether the Justice Department’s search inventory is accurate.

The requested affidavit would compel the former president to enter into the record before the court that the FBI planted evidence during the August 8 search.

Trump’s objection to the declaration request was announced Wednesday night in a court filing by his lawyers, after the Justice Department vaguely disputed its opposition in a public submission to US District Judge Raymond Dearie, who is acting as special master, on Tuesday afternoon.

Trump’s team argued that the judge’s order naming Dearie only referred to a statement from a government official verifying the Justice Department’s search warrant, and that there was no reference to a statement in support of Trump. In the new public filing, in a letter sent privately to Dearie Sunday, Trump said he had to object to the request because “the Special Master’s case management plan exceeds the District Court’s authority on this matter.”

“Furthermore, the plaintiff currently has no way of accessing the documents containing the classification marks, which would be necessary to complete this certification by September 30, as currently proposed,” Trump said.

The former president’s team also said Dearie is overstepping his authority by asking U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon, who granted Trump’s request for review, to file search documents in more specific categories than the subpoena provided.

Trump objected to Dearie providing a briefing on whether some legal motions related to the search were best left to the magistrate judge who granted the warrant.

Sunday’s objection letter to Dearie was made public with a Wednesday filing from Trump’s team, in which the special master was told the documents under the search amount to 200,000 pages of material. The amount of material seized has not increased significantly since prosecutors began working on the day of the raid, but the Trump team, now aware of the number of pages in each document, is concerned about how quickly they will have to work. the collection

The Trump team wants extra time to work through the large volume of documents — after the Justice Department identified as many as 11,000 items, or documents, three of Trump’s lawyers wrote in a letter to Dearie on Wednesday.

The Justice Department is investigating whether a crime was committed or national security compromised because Trump and others had federal government and classified records among the hundreds of thousands of pages from the Florida beach club after he left office.

In recent days, the special master process has prompted the Trump team and the Department of Justice to try to hire a service that can receive the documents digitally so they can work. Earlier this week, the department said in a court filing that Trump’s team indicated that data hosting companies did not want to work with the former president.

His team says the problem now is the size of the evidence collection.

“During discussions between plaintiff’s counsel and the Government regarding a data vendor, the Government indicated that the 11,000 documents contained more than 200,000 pages. This estimated volume, along with the need to act within the expedited timelines accepted by the Government, is the reason many of the vendors selected by the Government have declined potential engagement,” he wrote. Trump’s team said on Wednesday.

Trump, in a letter to Dearie on Wednesday, alleged that lawyers working on the investigation had access to a small number of confidential attorney-client communications before they were reviewed by the department’s filtering team or special masters.