Evan Corcoran and Lindsey Halligan, both members of former US President Donald Trump’s legal team, were seen entering the headquarters of the Department of Justice (DOJ) in Washington DC on Monday morning. Their arrival at the DOJ comes as the agency continues its investigations into Trump and his handling of classified documents after his presidency.
While there, the lawyers reportedly argued against any charges being brought against Trump in the probe. However, federal investigators have shifted their focus to an employee working at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence in Palm Beach, Florida. According to reports, the employee flooded a room containing computer servers that possessed video surveillance logs while draining the swimming pool on the property last year.
It is unclear at this time whether the flooding of the server room is being considered as suspicious or an accident. Nonetheless, federal investigators have questioned at least one witness about the episode. Responding to the investigation, Trump took to Truth Social in an all-caps meltdown, questioning how he could be charged when “no other presidents were charged.”
Adding to the upheaval, Trump’s estranged former deputy Mike Pence has filed presidential bid paperwork with the Federal Election Commission.
The situation took a more serious turn this week when federal prosecutors notified Trump and his legal representatives that he is the target of a criminal investigation related to possible mishandling of classified documents. A federal grand jury has been investigating Trump’s retention of classified materials after leaving the White House in 2021. A spokesperson for Special Counsel Jack Smith, who was appointed to lead the probes, declined to comment on Wednesday.
This notification is an indication that prosecutors are closing in on their decision to indict the former president. Upon receiving such information, a target has the opportunity to present evidence or testify before a grand jury, if they choose. Meanwhile, Trump’s aides have reached out to his allies in Congress, asking them to be prepared to defend the former president on television.
The existence of a separate grand jury in Florida suggests prosecutors might be leaning towards initiating criminal charges in the state, where the documents were taken after Trump left the White House, rather than in Washington DC.
Veteran public corruption and war crimes prosecutor, Smith, was appointed in November to serve as special counsel. As former chief of the Justice Department’s Public Integrity Section, he oversaw investigations into multiple prominent Democrats. Smith’s track record may shield him from attacks by Trump allies claiming he is biased against the former president.
The investigation into Trump centers not only on possession of classified documents, including at the top-secret level but also on Trump’s failure to return the records when requested, and on possible obstruction. The Mar-a-Lago investigation, along with another in Washington DC, is being led by Smith and concerns Trump’s role in attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
Developments regarding the DOJ probe into Trump’s alleged mishandling of classified documents are still unfolding, but the situation is becoming increasingly critical. As the investigation continues, it remains uncertain whether the former president will face criminal charges or if the legal wrangling will continue to escalate.