Trump’s lawsuit requests the appointment of a special master to audit the items confiscated by the FBI. The lawsuit also requests the return of any items taken that were outside the scope of the FBI’s warrant, according to The Wall Street Journal.
“To date, the government has failed to legitimize its historic decision to raid the home of a President who had been fully cooperative,” states the lawsuit, titled Trump v. United States Government.
The DOJ issued a short statement recognizing the lawsuit and saying that the department would address the lawsuit at length in court filings to come.
“The Aug. 8 search warrant at Mar-a-Lago was authorized by a federal court upon the required finding of probably cause. The Department is aware of this evening’s motion. The United States will file its response in court,” DOJ spokesman Anthony Coley said in a statement.
In the lawsuit, filed by three of Trump’s attorneys, the former president’s legal team says that the August 8 raid on his residence appears to be motivated politics than law and order. “[T]he Government has failed to legitimize its historic decision,” the suit says, adding that Attorney General Merrick Garland took the “unheard-of step” in the aftermath of holding a press conference over the raid and agreeing to release part of the search warrant application.
The lawsuit records a short history of Trump’s discussions with the National Archives over documents that the archives wanted retrieved from Mar-a-Lago. The lawsuit describes Trump as cooperative and accommodating with the National Archive’s, and later the Department of Justice’s requests.
The cooperation ended on August 8 when Trump, who was in New York at the time, received a call from Justice Department counterintelligence chief Jay Bratt, informing Trump that the FBI is searching Mar-a-Lago.
“At approximately 9:10a.m., Mr. Bratt telephoned counsel for President Trump and informed him that a group of FBI agents was at Mar-a-Lago to execute a search warrant. Heated discussion ensued as to why the Government did not make a voluntary request to further explore the premises, given the expansive assistance that President Trump had provided to that point,” the lawsuit states.
Trump issued a statement following the filing of his lawsuit in court.
“This Mar-a-Lago Break-In, Search, and Seizure was illegal and unconstitutional, and we are taking all actions necessary to get the documents back, which we would have given to them without the necessity of the despicable raid on my home, so that I can give them to the National Archives until they are required for the future Donald J. Trump Presidential Library and Museum,” Trump said.