OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
A federal judge has handed former President Donald Trump some good news following the FBI raid on his Florida estate early last week.
The District of Columbia Court of Appeals on Friday ruled that the Justice Department must release an internal memo sent to then-Attorney General William Barr in March 2019 advising him to determine that Trump did not obstruct justice, Fox News reported.
The appeals court noted that the memo urged Barr following the release of an investigative report by former Special Counsel Robert Mueller “to conclude that President Trump had not obstructed justice.”
Fox News adds:
The letter was sent to Barr from the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel and another department official after Special Counsel Robert Mueller delivered his report which investigated then-President Trump’s potential election interference and obstruction of justice.
Barr sent an overview of the Muller report to [C]ongress on March 24, 2019, stating that the report didn’t reach a conclusion on if then-President Trump obstructed justice, and said that there was insufficient evidence to make such a determination on his own.
Chief Judge Sri Srinivasan made the ruling in response to an ongoing lawsuit from Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington against the Justice Department, which sought the release of the memorandum and all related records.
The DOJ had said it could refrain from releasing the memo because they contained a record of internal discussions regarding governmental decisions, which can be cited as justification for not releasing documents to the general public.
But the appeals court rejected that argument and instead ordered the DOJ to release the memo in full.
Meanwhile, Fox News reported separately that an attorney for the former president told conservative talk host Mark Levin on Friday that he will “soon” file a Fourth Amendment-related lawsuit against the Justice Department in relation to the FBI’s Mar-a-Lago raid.
Former federal prosecutor James Trusty told Levin that Trump’s legal team will “weigh in very strong and very hard” regarding the raid, adding that Trump’s lawyers will be “attacking” the search warrant utilized to authorize the raid.
“It should be something that gets publicly filed. So the whole United States will get to read this thing,” Trusty said in describing the action that Trump’s team will take
Regarding when the legal action is to be filed, Trusty said during Levin’s Friday show that while Monday is a “possibility…it’s probably going to be more like hours.”
“It’s coming very soon,” he added.
“You know, the Fourth Amendment requires particularity. It requires narrowness to the intrusion on the person’s home. And this warrant had language in it. And keep in mind, all we’ve seen is a warrant and an inventory. But the warrant has language in it about if you find a classified document, you can take the whole box around, it and you can take any boxes near it. And that’s really the functional equivalent of a general search. There’s just no limit to that kind of scope in the warrant,” Trusty told Levin, the latter of whom is himself a constitutional attorney who served as chief of staff to Attorney General Edwin Meese during the Reagan administration.
The former federal prosecutor also told Levin that under the law and the Constitution, Trump is “entitled” to a detailed list of what FBI agents confiscated from his Palm Beach home, adding that the property receipt that has been public released thus far is a “very vague document.”
“We are way behind in terms of the government playing fair and giving us the details that we’re entitled to,” Trusty added.
In addition, Trusty called it “perplexing” as to why FBI agents took the former president’s passports and other documents related to executive and attorney-client privileges.
He then called for a “judicial intervention” at the district court level that “can help us vindicate the First Amendment rights of the president.”
“We’re going to come out swinging,” Trusty added.