The Monday raid on former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago home appears to be focused on whether Trump or his aides failed to return all of the documents sought by agents during earlier visits that were deemed government property, The Washington Post reports.
Citing sources familiar with the discussions, the Post said officials first became suspicious seven months ago when Trump returned some items to the National Archives that had been deemed government property. Either Trump or his top aides had kept key records even after a Justice Department probe into 15 boxes of files sent to Mar-a-Lago in the final days of his presidency.
After several months of talks, officials said they thought some of Trump's representatives were not completely truthful at times, the Post's sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said.
After taking a visit to Trump's Florida home in the spring and inspecting the area where records were held, Justice Department and FBI officials reportedly told Trump's representatives they were concerned that some records belonging to the government were still there and needed to be in the government's possession.
The National Archives already had been contacting people within Trump's circle and demanding the return of documents they believed were subject to the Presidential Records Act, two other sources told the Post.
Trump lawyer Christina Bobb told the Post that his legal team had discussed the situation with the DOJ in the spring and his former legal team had scoured the materials in the storage area for any that met the definition of presidential records.
Bobb told the Post that she and Trump lawyer Evan Corcoran met DOJ officials in June and that Trump stopped by the meeting and greeted officials, but wasn't interviewed.
The officials were shown several of the boxes and looked through them, later saying that they felt the storage room was not properly secured, so a lock was added.
FBI agents broke through the lock when they searched the area on Monday.
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