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Prosecutors turn over grand jury testimony to Trump’s team in documents case

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Prosecutors turned over unclassified discovery materials to former President Donald Trump’s legal team, including grand jury testimony from his valet.

The first batch of materials included documents obtained by subpoena, evidence from search warrants, transcripts of testimony taken before a grand jury in the District of Columbia, transcripts of testimony taken before a grand jury in the Southern District of Florida, and witness interviews conducted through May 12, according to court documents filed Thursday by special counsel Jack Smith’s team.

The grand jury documents would include transcripts of what Trump’s valet, Walt Nauta, said in the closed-door proceedings. Prosecutors charged Nauta as a conspirator in the case, alleging he lied about his role in moving boxes in and out of a Mar-a-Lago storage room while the government was trying to recover the documents.

The second batch includes reproduction of key documents and photographs referenced in the indictment and others pertinent to the case.

The third batch consists of complete copies of closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage obtained by prosecutors. Prosecutors also produced key excerpts from the footage, including excerpts referenced in the indictment, according to court records, according to court records.

Prosecutors spoke to many witnesses in the case, including former members of Trump’s legal team who were compelled to appear before the grand jury.

Prosecutors found more than 300 classified documents over the course of the investigation, but the criminal charges focus on 31 of those documents.

Also on Thursday, Trump asked Congress to investigate the “political witch hunts” against him by the “corrupt” Department of Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation.

“This continuing saga is retribution against me for winning and, even more importantly to them, election interference regarding the 2024 presidential election,” Trump posted on his social media platform Truth Social. “It will be there updated form of rigging our most important election.”

Trump pleaded not guilty to 37 counts that allege he kept sensitive military documents, shared them with people who didn’t have security clearance and tried to get around the government’s efforts to get them back. He is charged with 31 counts of willful retention of national defense information along with conspiracy to obstruct justice, withholding a document or record, corruptly concealing a document or record, concealing a document in a federal investigation, scheme to conceal and false statements and representations.

The indictment laid out the charges against Trump and his body man Walt Nauta. Trump was charged with keeping classified documents after leaving office and later obstructing the government’s efforts to get them back. The indictment contains specific dates and times with to-the-minute details of where the documents were stored, where they were moved and who was involved.

Among the records were 197 that contained classified markings, including 98 marked “secret” and 30 marked “top secret.” The “top secret” designation means that unauthorized disclosure “reasonably could be expected to cause exceptionally grave damage” to national security,” according to the indictment. Trump turned those records over to the National Archives and Records Administration on Jan. 17, 2022, in response to demands from that federal agency.

On June 3, 2022, an attorney for Trump provided the FBI with 38 additional documents with classified markings. And during a raid of Mar-a-Lago on Aug. 8, 2022, the FBI recovered 102 additional documents with classified markings.

While the U.S. Secret Service provided security to Trump while he was at his Palm Beach property, Trump never told the agency that classified documents were stored there, according to the indictment. Mar-a-Lago played host to 150 social events – such as weddings, fundraisers and movie premieres for tens of thousands of guests from January 2021, when Trump left office, through the FBI raid Aug. 8, 2022. Mar-a-Lago had about 150 employees during that time, prosecutors said in the indictment.

Prosecutors allege the documents belong to some of the nation’s most secret agencies, including the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Defense, the National Security Agency, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, National Reconnaissance Office, the Department of Energy and the Department of State.

The documents contained information regarding defense and weapons capabilities of the United States and other allied nations, U.S. nuclear programs, plans for possible retaliation in case of an attack and potential U.S. vulnerabilities, according to the indictment.

Trump stored the boxes in several locations at Mar-a-Lago, his social club with 25 guest rooms in Palm Beach. The boxes that contained classified documents were stored in a ballroom, a bathroom and shower, an office space, his bedroom and a storage room, prosecutors alleged in the indictment.

The club was not authorized to store classified documents.

Prosecutors further alleged Trump showed classified documents to people not authorized to see such records. In one case July 21, 2021, at the Bedminster Club in New Jersey, Trump allegedly showed a writer, a publisher and two staff members classified documents. During the recorded interview, Trump said the documents were “highly classified” and he could have declassified them while president, but could no longer do so after leaving office, according to the indictment. In August or September 2021, prosecutors allege Trump showed a representative of his political action committee a classified map of a country.

The classified documents case isn’t the only legal challenge for Trump.

In April, Trump pleaded not guilty to 34 felony counts in New York related to charges he paid hush money to adult film star Stormy Daniels through a lawyer before the 2016 presidential election and covered it up as a legal expense before being elected president.

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