The federal investigation of former President Donald Trump’s possible mishandling of classified documents is nearing its conclusion.
Three Trump lawyers met with Justice Department officials on Monday, including special counsel Jack Smith, but refused to comment on the status of the case.
Trump’s lawyers – John Rowley, James Trust, and Lindsey Halligan – reportedly spent two hours at the Justice Department.
Donald Trump Insists He’s Innocent
Trump has repeatedly claimed that he is the subject of a “witch hunt” and says he did nothing wrong regarding the alleged storage of classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago property in Palm Beach, Florida.
In recent social media posts, Trump hinted that indictments may be coming on the case, protesting that charges would be unfair and insisting he committed no crime. Trump claimed that the entire investigation is an attempt at “election interference” to steal the 2024 election from him.
Trump is currently the clear frontrunner to win the Republican nomination for president in 2024 and faces several probes. Beyond the classified documents investigation, Trump is facing felony charges in New York, and he recently lost a suit brought against him by journalist E. Jean Carroll. Trump’s lawyers are now trying to stop Carroll from bringing a second suit.
Following Monday’s meeting with DOJ officials, Trump indicated on his social media platform Truth Social that he expects to be chargec.
“How can DOJ possible charge me, who did nothing wrong,” Trump wrote, entirely in the upper case.
Meanwhile, the federal grand jury in the classified document case is set to meet this coming week in Florida. Special counsel Jack Smith’s prosecutorial team recently presented a second grand jury in Washington, D.C., with evidence and testimonies relating to the case.
It remains unclear if an indictment will be forthcoming in Florida or New York, and the DOJ has so far declined to comment. It’s also unclear how the meeting of the grand jury in Florida and its consideration of testimony may or may not affect the ongoing case in New York.
The matter in question is whether Trump broke the law by willfully keeping classified documents at his residence after leaving the White House, and whether he also interfered in federal attempts to reclaim the documents. If charged, Trump will be the first former American president to face criminal charges for the second time.
Examining The Facts
Mar-a-Lago was raided by federal agents in the summer of last year to take back documents, including a number that the government claimed were classified and hadn’t been turned over after an initial request to Trump’s lawyers.
Approximately 300 documents designated as classified were allegedly taken in the raid.
Trump’s legal team claims these were simply taken upon his exit from the White House and were not part of any intentional lawbreaking or crime.
Jack Buckby is 19FortyFive’s Breaking News Editor. He is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.