Why the FBI has raided Donald Trump's home

Officials found Donald Trump took 15 boxes from the White House to his home in Mar-a-Lago
Jack Quann
Jack Quann

20.52 9 Aug 2022

Share this article

Why the FBI has raided Donald...

Why the FBI has raided Donald Trump's home

Jack Quann
Jack Quann

20.52 9 Aug 2022

Share this article

The raid on Donald Trump's Florida estate is either a political assassination attempt - or the most significant criminal investigation into a US president in history.

That's according to Mick Mulvaney, former chief of staff for Mr Trump.

While Mr Trump described it as a "dark times for our nation", White House officials admitted that they knew nothing of the FBI's plans to storm his Mar-a-Lago home.


Mr Mulvaney told The Hard Shoulder his former boss is facing investigations from several sides.

"The president is under investigation from a couple of different sources.

"He's under investigation by Congress, the January 6th committee's looking into the events surrounding the riot at the Capitol on that day.

"That's a political investigation, it has no real legal standing.

"We've learned just in the past couple of weeks the president is also under investigation by the federal Department of Justice.

"Very high-ranking members of the Trump White House have been called before a criminal grand jury under subpoena to testify, we assume regarding the events of January 6th - so we knew there was investigation going on.

"What we learned late last night, however, was that it was actually a search warrant issued by a federal judge that gave the.... FBI the right to go into Donald Trump's home in Florida... to look for things".

Views inside the Mar-a-Lago estate, owned by Donald Trump, in 2008 Views inside the Mar-a-Lago estate, owned by Donald Trump, in 2008. Picture by: chris Bott / Alamy Stock Photo

He says such a warrant would have had to reach certain thresholds.

"They have to be able to show a judge that there's probable cause that a crime has taken place, probable cause that there's evidence around that crime at a particular place, and that there is a likelihood that that evidence would disappear if the Government can't get its hands on it right away.

"That's apparently what the Department of Justice convinced a judge of, which is what gave them the right to go into the president's house".

He adds: "Either it's the most egregious political assassination attempt by my own Government against a political leader in history - or it's the most significant criminal investigation into a president in history.

"Keep in mind: not even Nixon had his home raided".

What are they looking for?

After Donald Trump's presidency ended in January last year, officials found he had taken 15 boxes from the White House to his home in Mar-a-Lago.

This investigation was launched by the US National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), the independent government body charged with preserving government and historical records.

After demanding he return the boxes, the NARA discovered in January this year they contained government documents, including ones "marked as classified national security information" - as well as gifts, letters and mementos.

The NARA then referred the case to the US Justice Department to probe whether Mr Trump's unauthorised handling of the documents amounts to a violation of federal law.

Some of the documents in the boxes are subject to the Presidential Records Act.

Passed by Congress in wake of the 1972 Watergate scandal, it dictates that presidential documents are not the then-president's property - and should be handed over to the NARA when they leave office to be then made public 12 years later.

Mr Trump could have also potentially broken legislation on the appropriate handling of government documents while he was still in office or be charged for obstruction of justice if he was found to have been covering his tracks.

In April it was reported that a federal grand jury investigation had begun and the Justice Department there had made several requests - including a subpoena - to NARA for the boxes and interviews with various people in the Trump administration.

It is not clear what law enforcement officials were looking for, but it is likely to have been any additional evidence that would help with prosecutors' case.

Additional reporting: IRN

Main image: Composite image shows Donald Trump talks to reporters at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida in March 2019 and an aerial view of Mar-a-Lago in February 2017. Picture by: REUTERS/Zuma Press, Inc./Alamy Stock Photo

Share this article

Read more about

Donald Trump's Home Fbi Florida January 6th Committee Mar-a-Lago Mick Mulvaney NARA National Archives And Records Administration Presidential Records Act US Department Of Justice White House

Most Popular