The U.S. Justice Department has unearthed new evidence suggesting that former President Donald Trump obstructed the investigation into his handling of classified documents at Mar-A-Lago. The government's evidence is based on interviews with witnesses and security camera footage, as well as text messages and email correspondences from a former Trump aide.
According to sources familiar with the matter, investigators have found that after he was subpoenaed to turn over the documents, Trump looked through boxes containing classified information hoping to keep some with him. They also discovered that he directed others to mislead government officials about the documents before the subpoena was issued.
Furthermore, evidence shows that despite advice from his legal team advising him to return all classified materials back to National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), Trump sought advice on how to keep certain records.
A spokesperson for Trump dismissed these allegations as part of a "witch hunt," saying they have “no basis in facts or law.”
However, last week, a federal judge overseeing legal issues between Trump and DOJ said there is enough evidence showing that he “intentionally concealed” his knowledge of classified documents in his possession from his lawyers.
This investigation is one of four criminal probes facing Donald Trump - including another probe by DOJ investigating hush-money payout made by Michael Cohen on behalf of Stormy Daniels; an ongoing state prosecutor's inquiry in Georgia over efforts blocking Joe Biden's victory in 2020 election; and a separate DOJ probe into how a small number of classified documents ended up in an insecure office during President Biden’s administration.
As this investigation heats up, it remains unclear what consequences former president Donald J. Trump faces if convicted for intentional document theft. The new piece(s) of evidence could help prove intent which may lead to obstruction charges against him.