Donald Trump’s legal representatives handed over a folder marked as classified to federal agents, according to sources familiar with the situation. The folder was discovered at the former President’s Mar-a-Lago resort last month.
Classified Materials Discovered at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Resort
The nature of the classified markings on the folder and its contents remains unknown. Along with the folder, a separate document bearing classified markings was handed over to investigators, according to sources.
Furthermore, a laptop owned by a current assistant to the former president has also been submitted to federal agents, according to the sources.
Sources disclosed the discovery was made during a search carried out by Trump’s team in the midst of January, as part of the Department of Justice’s continued efforts to confirm that the former president no longer possesses any classified documents.
The DOJ is seeking confirmation from Trump’s legal counsel.
The classified material was discovered at the Mar-a-Lago resort, not in a storage unit within the complex that previously held hundreds of sensitive documents before they were taken into custody in August 2022, according to the sources.
More classified material has been found at Mar-a-Lago, on a laptop. It was in the resort complex, and not in the “secure” storage facility. The laptop, which belongs to a current Trump aide, has been turned over to federal officials. So documents were copied/transmitted? pic.twitter.com/UMlcfDCGi3
— Mike Sington (@MikeSington) February 10, 2023
During the August investigation, 46 folders marked with classified banners were found to be empty and were seized by the investigators.
James Trusty, the legal counsel for Trump, surrendered the folder marked with classified information to federal investigators, informing them that its contents were duplicated electronically onto a laptop of a current aide to the former president.
The folder with classified markings was found among other papers in a box, sources say. An electronic copy of the contents of the box was created, leading to concerns about the possibility of additional electronic records that might be of significance to the special counsel’s inquiry.
According to sources, after the discovery of the classified information, federal agents obtained the laptop from the current assistant to the former president. The laptop was not procured from the Mar-a-Lago complex, the sources added.
NEW: Trump's legal team turned over a folder with classification markings found last month at Mar-a-Lago to federal agents, multiple sources familiar with the matter tell ABC News. https://t.co/7W6nm0363o
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) February 10, 2023
Further Investigation Will Be Conducted
When faced with these types of situations, it’s typical for investigators to scrutinize the laptop in search of any trace of confidential data, as stated by John Cohen.
He is a seasoned professional with a background as an ex-undersecretary for the Department of Homeland Security Intelligence Department and a current news contributor to ABC News.
Furthermore, Cohen noted they will also investigate if any classified information was transferred to other electronics or computers via the laptop in question.
A representative for President Trump spoke to ABC News and characterized the government’s current investigation as a “narrowly focused, politically charged pursuit aimed at Trump to hinder the American people’s ability to re-elect him to the White House.”
ABC News reached out for a response from both Trump and the special counsel’s office; however, neither provided any comment.