- A former DOJ official who oversaw Hillary Clinton’s emails said documents retrieved at Mar-a-Lago were “egregious.”
- FBI agents found Trump with 11 sets of highly sensitive government information.
- One set of documents contained Sensitive Compartmented Information.
A former Justice Department official who oversaw the investigation of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s emails said the sensitivity of the documents that the FBI retrieved from Mar-a-Lago was “particularly stunning and particularly egregious.”
On Monday, the FBI searched former President Donald Trump’s Palm Beach, Florida, home and seized 11 sets of classified documents from the former president. Trump is being investigated by the DOJ over whether or not he violated three federal laws, including the Espionage Act.
According to a search warrant released by the Department of Justice, one of these sets of Top Secret information was designated as Sensitive Compartmented Information, which is the highest level of sensitivity a classified document can receive.
“The fact that he had SCI material out in the wild, so to speak, at risk is particularly stunning and particularly egregious,” David Laufman, the former chief of the Department of Justice’s counterintelligence division, told anchor Erin Burnett on CNN.
The release of Top Secret information can cause “exceptionally grave damage” to national security, according to Executive Order 13526.
One of Trump’s many defenses following the search was that the documents found in his home had been declassified, but there is little evidence this is the case.
Laufman told CNN that Trump had a “consistent flagrant disregard for the protection of classified information and disregard for the Intelligence Committee throughout his presidency” and was not surprised the former President was holding on to Top Secret government papers.
“Having said that, it is nonetheless shocking to me having overseen prosecutions of multiple defendants under provisions of Espionage Act, to see that same statute leveled as a foundation for a search warrant executed on the home of a former president of the United States,” Laufman said.
Laufman also said the discovery of the documents during the FBI’s search “completely validates the government’s investigation” into the former President.
“Whether this investigation transforms into an outright criminal prosecution remains to be seen,” Laufman said.