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Attorney General Merrick Garland has broken his silence after an FBI raid of former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence conducted earlier this week.
While speaking to reporters at the Department of Justice, Garland announced that the DOJ filed a motion to unseal the search warrant for Trump’s Mar-a-Lago property.
Garland said he “personally approved” the matter against the former president.
“Faithful adherence to the rule of law is the bedrock principle of the Justice Department and of our democracy. Upholding the rule of law means applying the law evenly, without fear or favor,” Garland said.
“Much of our work is by necessity conducted out of the public eye. We do that to protect the Constitutional rights of all Americans and to protect the integrity of our investigations,” he said.
“The search warrant was authorized by a federal court upon the required finding of probable cause,” he told reporters.
“Copies of both the warrant and the FBI property receipt were provided on the day of the search to the former President’s counsel who was on site during the search,” he added.
AG Merrick Garland says he "personally approved" the search warrant.
— Samantha-Jo Roth (@SamanthaJoRoth) August 11, 2022
On Wednesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray refused to directly address questions about the raid.
While speaking with reporters, Wray did find the time to denounce “deplorable” threats against law enforcement in his first public comments since the search in Florida.
Asked to respond to Trump’s suggestion, Wray declined to jump into the fray. “As I’m sure you can appreciate, that’s not something I can talk about,” he said. Wray then referred such a question to the Department of Justice.
Wray did answer a question from a reporter asking about threats made against agents.
“Any threats made against law enforcement, including the men and women of the FBI, as with any law enforcement agency, are deplorable and dangerous,” the FBI director said.
A federal judge on Wednesday ordered the Biden Justice Department to produce a copy of a search warrant executed at his Mar-a-Lago estate, where the FBI conducted a nine-hour-plus search on Monday.
Federal Judge Bruce Reinhart ordered the DOJ to “file a Response to the Motion to Unseal” the warrant after requests were made by the Times-Union, a newspaper located in Albany, N.Y., as well as the conservative legal group Judicial Watch.
The judge said that the DOJ must respond no later than Aug. 15, reports said.
Reinhart signed off on the FBI’s warrant to search the former president’s palatial home in South Florida in what he said was an “unannounced raid on my home.”
He took a leave of absence from a local U.S. Attorney’s office more than 10 years ago to represent employees of convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein after they had gotten immunity during the lengthy probe of the now-late financier for sex trafficking.
Trump attorney Lindsey Halligan said that the warrant was “sealed” when agents showed up to search Trump’s estate.
Another Trump lawyer, Christian Bobb, meanwhile, told streaming network Real America’s Voice: “When I arrived and kind of announced myself as the legal representation for President Trump. I asked to see a copy of the warrant.”
Republicans are vowing to “clean house” in the wake of the FBI raiding Trump’s home in Florida.
“This is Gestapo crap and it will not stand. The Department of Injustice needs to be cleaned out if they are going to start pretending we are some kind of banana republic,” Rep. Lauren Boebert, Colorado Republican, went on to say in a video she posted on Twitter.
Arizona GOP Rep. Paul Gosar issued a similar response, saying: “I will support a complete dismantling and elimination of the democrat brown shirts known as the FBI. This is too much for our republic to withstand.”
“DEFUND THE FBI!” Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, a member of the GOP from Georgia, stated in a post on Twitter.
“House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said Attorney General Merrick Garland should preserve documents and clear his calendar because the GOP will investigate the raid if they retake the majority. Ms. Boebert made a similar vow in her Twitter video,” the report said.
“The FBI raiding Donald Trump is unprecedented. It is corrupt & an abuse of power,” Texas GOP Sen. Ted Cruz wrote on Twitter. “What Nixon tried to do, Biden has now implemented: The Biden Admin has fully weaponized DOJ & FBI to target their political enemies.”
Trump revealed on Monday that his Mar-a-Lago home in Florida was raided by a “large group” of FBI agents.
The FBI’s unannounced raid was allegedly tied to boxes of classified information that Trump had supposedly taken to his Florida estate.