(PresidentialWire.com)- Even former President Donald Trump’s own legal team has acknowledged that their client could indeed face criminal charges from the probe into whether he illegally took classified government records away from the White House and kept them at his home in Florida at Mar-a-Lago.
The lawyers admitted to that opinion as part of a court filing they made on Monday.
The court filings are part of the review that special master Raymond Dearie is conducting into whether any of the documents taken from Trump’s residence are subject to either executive or attorney-client privilege.
Politico reported this week that Dearie, a former federal judge, has asked Trump’s legal team to disclose all information they have about what materials he believes are subject to those privileges or which he claims that he declassified while in office.
But, Trump’s lawyers are asking the special master they suggested to drop that request. As his attorneys wrote in a court filing on Monday:
“Similarly, the Draft Plan requires that the Plaintiff disclose specific information regarding declassification to the Court and to the Government. We respectfully submit that the time and place for affidavits or declarations would be in connection with a Rule 41 motion that specifically alleges declassification as a component of its argument for return of property.
“Otherwise, the Special Master process will have forced the Plaintiff to fully and specifically disclose a defense to the merits of any subsequent indictment without such a requirement being evident in the District Court’s order.”
Since late last year, Trump was warned by various lawyers that he needed to return all U.S. government records that the National Archives and Records Administration was requesting of him. Based on the fact that he was giving pushback on that, the Department of Justice and FBI began a full-blown investigation.
That came to a head not long ago when the FBI conducted a raid on his Mar-a-Lago home and office and seized multiple boxes of documents they claim were classified material that should’ve never been removed from Washington, D.C.
According to a report published by The New York Times, Eric Herschmann, a former lawyer for the Trump administration, warned the former president that he could face significant legal action if he didn’t return the records that he took away from Washington.
Herschmann attempted to get Trump to understand how serious of a situation it was, according to The Times, warning him that he could face significant criminal investigations if he didn’t comply.
Trump ultimately returned 15 boxes of documents back in January after Herschmann issued his warning, and many of those documents were indeed classified, the National Archives and Records Administration said.
Those weren’t all the records he apparently had in his possession, though, so federal officials paid him a visit in June.
The investigation continued, and the FBI eventually raided his home in August, seeking to seize any records that they thought Trump still had in his possession.
Now, the two sides are battling it out in court as even Trump’s lawyers admit that he’s in serious jeopardy of being charged with a crime.