Justice Department and FBI investigators reportedly have fresh evidence indicating possible obstruction by former president Donald Trump in the investigation into top-secret documents found at his Mar-a-Lago home.
The Washington Post, citing unnamed sources, reported the added evidence comes as investigators have used emails and text messages from a former Trump aide to help guide them in figuring out if Trump went through the boxes after a subpoena was issued to turn them over.
According to the Post, the new details highlight the degree to which special counsel Jack Smith's probe of potential mishandling of hundreds of classified national security papers at Trump's Florida home and private club is focusing on whether Trump took or directed actions to impede government efforts to collect all the sensitive records.
The Trump investigation team has been focusing on events that happened after Trump's advisers got a subpoena last May demanding the return of all documents with classified markings, the Post reported.
Smith is trying to determine if Trump or others mishandled national security documents, and if there is enough evidence to ask a grand jury to charge him with obstructing the investigation, the news outlet noted.
In a written statement, Trump spokesman Steven Cheung told the Post: "The witch hunts against President Trump have no basis in facts or law.
"The deranged special counsel and the DOJ have now resorted to prosecutorial misconduct by illegally leaking information to corrupt the legal process and weaponize the justice system in order to manipulate public opinion and conduct election interference, because they are clearly losing all across the board."
The statement went on to point to the classified documents probe of President Joe Biden, as well as the investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server when she was secretary of state, suggesting that was worse than anything that happened at Mar-a-Lago.
"President Trump is the only leader fighting for the Constitution and to protect the American people from being abused by those who want to destroy our system of government," Cheung said.
In the Trump classified documents case, the Post reported federal investigators have new evidence that after the subpoena was delivered, Trump looked through the contents of some of the boxes of documents in his home — apparently hoping to keep some things.
Investigators suspect boxes including classified material were moved from a Mar-a-Lago storage area after the subpoena was served, and that Trump personally examined at least some of those boxes, the Post reported.
The Post reported investigators have also amassed evidence indicating Trump told others to mislead government officials in early 2022, before the subpoena, when the National Archives and Records Administration was working with the Justice Department to try to recover a wide range of papers, many of them not classified, from Trump's time as president.
The alleged conduct could serve as evidence of the former president's intent, the news outlet reported.
The Post reported that as investigators piece together what happened in May and June of last year, they have been asking witnesses if Trump showed classified documents, including maps, to political donors.
Investigators have also asked witnesses if Trump showed a particular interest in material relating to Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Post reported.
Fran Beyer ✉
Fran Beyer is a writer with Newsmax and covers national politics.
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