‘Will Be Indicted’: Legal Experts Say Trump Should Expect to Get Target Letter After Release of ‘Pulverizing’ Affidavit
Legal experts are going through the FBI’s redacted affidavit used to obtain the “search and seize” warrant to enter Mar-a-Lago three weeks ago and remove presidential records, including documents classified and the highest levels, believed to have been stored there by Donald Trump.
It appears the general consensus from legal experts is this document is damning for the former president, both on the volume of documents he allegedly unlawfully held, and on the nature of the documents: not only classified but classified at some of the highest levels, and so dangerous if they were given to America’s adversaries that, as the affidavit states, “lives can be at risk.”
Attorney David Laufman, a former Chief of the Counterintelligence and Export Control Section (CES) in the National Security Division at the Department of Justice (DOJ), called the volume of evidence the FBI and DOJ has “pulverizing” in an appearance Friday on MSNBC, and that Trump should expect to get a target letter.
READ MORE: ‘Grave Damage’: Affidavit Says Trump Had Large Number of Classified National Defense Docs in ‘Unauthorized’ Location
“If I were President Trump and his attorneys, I’d be fearful of getting what’s called a ‘target letter’ in the not too distant future,” Laufman said.. “It’s pretty clear to me that the government had a pulverizing amount of information that more than exceeded the standard of probable cause, and that they are all in.”
“They are all in building a prosecutable case for a violation under the Espionage Act, Section 793 E, for willful retention of classified information in an unauthorized place, and more than that, extrapolating from redactions [in the affidavit] after a section where they describe Kash Patel, trying to claim that President Trump declassified all this stuff. It’s a lot of redactions, and I’m guessing that’s where they are just knocking down piece by piece. The notion that this stuff was declassified, as you pointed out, in your intro, we’re talking about a holy of holies of sensitive intelligence, information, human, FISA. There wasn’t even any mention of Special Access Program material. He’s in deep jeopardy.”
On Twitter Laufman added, “In real estate, it’s about ‘location, location, location.’ When it comes to unlawful retention of classified docs, it’s all about ‘willfulness, willfulness, willfulness.’ And looks like the government has that evidence in abundance.”
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Attorney and senior lecturer at Yale University’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, CNN commentator and former FBI agent Asha Rangappa observes: “The extent of what has been compromised in our intelligence gathering capabilities is going to be staggering.”
Elliot Williams, a former deputy assistant attorney general at DOJ and an assistant director at US Immigration and Customs Enforcement tweeted: “The law says a ‘TOP SECRET’ document is one that would cause ‘exceptionally grave damage to the national security’ if released.”
“HE HAD AT LEAST 25 OF THOSE IN HIS HOUSE,” Williams stressed.
Former FBI Special Agent Clint Watts on MSNBC raised the issue that the large number of classified documents were not secured, and anyone with a cell phone could have taken photos of them and distributed them. It’s unknown if that has happened, hen says the affidavit suggests.
Top national security lawyer Brad Moss concludes, “I have seen enough, folks. Donald Trump will be indicted in the classified documents matter. I’m placing my marker.”
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Jim Jordan Busted for Helping Trump ‘Tamper’ With Probe: ‘Beyond All Bounds of What’s Legal’
Manhattan district attorney Alvin Bragg rebuffed a Republican House demand for a peek inside an investigation involving Donald Trump as “unlawful,” and MSNBC’s Al Sharpton agreed it amounted to “tampering.”
Bragg’s general counsel denied a request for documents and an interview with the district attorney by Judiciary, Oversight and Administration Committee chairs Jim Jordan (R-OH), James Comer (R-KY) and Bryan Steil (R-WI), calling the congressional inquiry an “unprecedented” intervention into a pending local prosecution undertaken at Trump’s request.
“Any man that is up in the middle of the night, that is going with this kind of language, is scared to death,” Sharpton said of Trump, who has been posting highly provocative online attacks against Bragg. “The problem, though, is that he is inciting people, no matter how small they have become as a crowd, to do something. Add that to him having the photo of the bat at a sitting prosecutor, I mean, it’s unimaginable. You’re right, we’d be arrested for that.”
“We have chairmen of committees telling a prosecutor, who is in the middle of an investigation, to come and give us the evidence,” Sharpton added. “I mean, they’re really tampering with an investigation. This is not an investigation that’s concluded. Before we know whether there is an indictment or charge, they’re saying bring us the evidence? I mean, this is unheard of. What is Jordan talking about? They’re in the middle of a grand jury proceeding. You want the prosecutor to leave the proceeding and tell me the evidence you’re giving, and we’ll put it on national television so the target can understand the evidence? I mean, we are going beyond all bounds of what is legal, what is respectful, and we have a man who is scared to death, that is up in the middle of the night inciting violence, having a photo with a bat, because he’s scared to death he’s going to have to face this prosecution.”
READ MORE: Trump is ‘out of his mind scared’ after late-night outburst : Morning Joe panel
Watch the video below or at this link.
Lindsey Graham Admonished by Senate Ethics Committee
U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has been formally admonished by the Senate Ethics Committee for violating ethics rules and standards by repeatedly soliciting campaign donations during an interview at the Capitol.
The bipartisan committee issued Graham a Public Letter of Admonition after the South Carolina Republican solicited donations for Georgia GOP Senate nominee Herschel Walker.
“Based upon all available information, the Committee concluded that on November 30, 2022, you conducted a media interview with Fox News in the rotunda of the Russell Senate Office Building and that your interview was slightly over nine minutes, with over four minutes devoted to a discussion of the 2022 senatorial run-off election in Georgia. The Committee further concluded that during your discussion of the senatorial run-off election, you directly solicited campaign contributions on behalf of Mr. Walker’s campaign committee, www.teamherschel.com, five separate times.”
The letter notes that Sen. Graham had previously violated the same standards when he solicited campaign donations in a federal building in October of 2020, but said it was an “unplanned media interview.” When a reporter had asked him about fundraising, Graham “directly solicited campaign contributions” for his re-election campaign.
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The Committee noted “mitigating” circumstances and did not cite him for that violation.
“The public must feel confident that Members use public resources only for official actions in the best interests of the United States, not for partisan political activity,” the letter concludes. “Your actions failed to uphold that standard, resulting in harm to the public trust and confidence in the United States Senate. You are hereby admonished.”
CNN’s Manu Raju posted the letter to social media.
You can read the letter below or at this link.
In a letter to Sen. Lindsey Graham, the bipartisan Senate Ethics Committee admonished him for soliciting campaign contributions five times during a media interview in the Russell Senate office building. It is against Senate rules to solicit campaign donations on Capitol grounds pic.twitter.com/amc5ipcosw
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) March 23, 2023
‘Repercussions’: Biden White House Warns Uganda ‘Kill the Gays’ Bill Could Force US to Cancel $950 Million in Annual Aid
The Biden administration may cancel the $950 million in annual assistance the U.S. provides to Uganda if President Yoweri Museveni signs into law its latest “Kill the Gays” bill, which calls for the death penalty for “aggravated homosexuality” and between ten and 20 years in prison for other LGBTQ “acts.”
National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby on Wednesday made clear if Uganda further criminalizes homosexuality and the LGBTQ community there could be “repercussions that we would have to take.”
“That would be really unfortunate because so much of the economic assistance that we provide Uganda is health assistance,” Admiral Kirby said at a White House press briefing.
National Security Council’s John Kirby suggests the U.S. would consider economic punishments if Uganda’s law criminalizing LGBTQ people goes into effect:
“That would be really unfortunate because so much of the economic assistance that we provide Uganda is health assistance.” pic.twitter.com/hWrRrHqd6q
— The Recount (@therecount) March 22, 2023
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre also told reporters Wednesday the Biden administration has “grave concerns” over the Anti-Homosexuality Act (AHA), and “increasing violence targeting LGBTQIA+ persons.”
READ MORE: Florida GOP Lawmaker Who Wrote ‘Don’t Say Gay’ Bill Facing Up to 35 Years After Pleading Guilty in COVID Fraud Case
“If the AHA is signed into law and enacted, it would impinge upon universal human rights, jeopardize progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS, deter tourism and invest in Uganda and damage Uganda’s international reputation,” Jean-Pierre warned. “The bill is one of the most extreme anti-LGBTQI+ laws in the world.”
WH Press Sec. Karine Jean-Pierre denounces the Ugandan parliament’s passage of a bill criminalizing LGBTQ people:
“If the AHA is signed into law and enacted, it would impinge upon universal human rights … The bill is one of the most extreme anti-LGBTQI+ laws in the world.” pic.twitter.com/WSzCY5Vlq4
— The Recount (@therecount) March 22, 2023
Kirby and Jean-Pierre’s remarks came on the same day as U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken denounced Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” legislation, saying it “would undermine fundamental human rights of all Ugandans and could reverse gains in the fight against HIV/AIDS.”
“The United States provides more than $950 million in aid to Uganda each year, according to the State Department. The money supports development and health care measures, such as combating HIV/AIDS,” Courthouse News reported Wednesday. “Uganda is already among 30 African countries that ban same-sex relations. The new proposal would broaden penalties and appears to be the first to outlaw identifying as LGBTQ+, according to Human Rights Watch.”
Watch the videos above or at this link.
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