Judge Rejects DOJ’s Attempt To Block Affidavit Release In ‘Unprecedented’ Mar-a-Lago Raid

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Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart, formerly a Jeffrey Epstein-affiliated lawyer, has rejected the Biden Justice Department’s request to keep the affidavit used to obtain a search warrant at 45th President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home and resort sealed while calling the action “unprecedented” in U.S. history.

Reinhart, who came under intense scrutiny after approving the warrant, when it was revealed he is a Democratic donor and formerly represented multiple associates of deceased pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, denied the request in a filing Monday morning.

In the filing, Reinhart rejected “the Government’s argument that the present record justifies keeping the entire Affidavit under seal,” and declared that it must be released – in some redacted form – due to “intense public and historic interest” and the “unprecedented” nature of the raid.

“Particularly given the intense public and historical interest in an unprecedented search of a former President’s residence,” wrote Reinhart, “the Government has not yet shown that these administrative concerns are sufficient to justify sealing.”

Related: Trump Will Release Security Footage From FBI’s Mar-a-Lago Raid: Eric Trump

He added, “Accordingly, it is hereby ORDERED that by the deadline, the Government shall file under seal a submission addressing possible redactions and providing any additional evidence or legal argument that the Government believes relevant to the pending Motions to Unseal.”

The government now has until Thursday, August 25 to “propose redaction” to the Court. Reinhart will then review those redactions and determine whether to allow them, or request the Department of Justice make more information available, according to Fox News.

Helicopter flies over Mar-a-Lago

Marine One departs Mar-a-Lago in 2019 (Trump White House / Tia Dufour)

Officials with Biden’s Department of Justice argued that unsealing the affidavit, or releasing a redacted one, could “provide a roadmap” of the investigation, according to Just The News.

Thus far, the raid on Mar-a-Lago appears to have damaged the electoral prospects of Democrats this fall.

Trump has claimed the Department of Justice and FBI raid resulted in a rise in ratings for the former President, and multiple news stories have likely proven damaging for the Democrats.

After first claiming he was not involved, Attorney General Merrick Garland later confirmed he “personally” ordered the raid to occur. Fox News host Tucker Carlson later mocked him for raiding the home of his and Joe Biden’s chief political rival.

Related: Mar-a-Lago Raid Warrant Released: Feds Seized Random Documents Trump Says Are ‘All Declassified’

One of the FBI agents involved in the raid – indeed, the man who signed the paperwork at Mar-a-Lago – was formerly involved with charging one of Trump’s supporters who attended the January 6 protests.

The FBI also took Trump’s passports while conducting the raid, only to later offer confusing statements claiming they were not currently in possession of the passports. It was later revealed that they were in the process of being returned.

Reinhart, for his part, formerly represented Epstein’s pilots, personal scheduler, and a woman described as Epstein’s sex slave. He was able to obtain immunity for his clients.

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