The Justice Department was prepared to obtain a warrant to search President Biden’s Delaware home for classified documents if the commander-in-chief’s legal team had not given consent, according to a report.
Before the FBI conducted its unprecedented 1 p.m. raid of the 80-year-old president’s 6,850-square-foot Wilmington mansion last week, Biden’s attorneys and the DOJ discussed details of when and how. the sweep would take place, according to PKBNEWS.
Federal investigators did not discuss the possibility of a warrant with Biden’s attorneys during those conversations, but they were prepared to obtain one if necessary, according to the outlet.
During the search last Friday, the federal government found six other documents marked classified, some dating back to when Biden was a senator.
White House attorney Ian Sams described the hunt for FBI documents as “a planned consensus search” during a call with reporters on Monday.
The initial discovery of about 10 classified documents at the Penn Biden Center think tank in Washington, D.C. on November 2 sparked the DOJ’s investigation into Biden’s mishandling of highly sensitive documents.
On Nov. 10, the DOJ’s National Security Division briefed Biden’s legal team on specific processes and protocols for the president’s attorneys to follow during the investigation, PKBNEWS reports.
Biden and his team have publicly stressed that they cooperated with the DOJ throughout the process and in the run-up to Friday’s search of the Wilmington home, but according to the outlet, DOJ officials were unhappy with the slow pace. of research.
The president’s personal attorneys searched his Wilmington home for classified documents for the first time in December, more than six weeks after the initial discovery at the Penn Biden Center. Biden’s home in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, was not searched for another three weeks after Wilmington’s sweep.
Biden’s attorneys also failed to notify the DOJ before their research took place, which irked some within the department, and only alerted investigators when more classified documents emerged, according to PKBNEWS.
The slow release of information by the White House also concerned DOJ officials, the outlet said, noting that at the time news of the documents found at the Penn Biden Center broke, classified documents had also been found in Wilmington by Biden’s lawyers. , which was not disclosed on the same day.
Before last Friday, the Justice Department decided not to let FBI agents monitor searches of Biden’s homes in Delaware, in part because Biden’s lawyers were deemed to be cooperating with the DOJ investigation, reported. the Wall Street Journal last week.
Attorney General Merrick Garland on Monday pushed back against criticism that the Justice Department is treating Biden more favorably than former President Donald Trump as the government investigates the two men’s mishandling of classified documents.
“The department has a set of standards and practices,” Garland said. “That means, among other things, we don’t have different rules for Democrats or Republicans, different rules for the powerful or the powerless, different rules for the rich or the poor.”
“We apply the facts and the law in each case in a neutral and non-partisan way,” he added. “That’s what we always do, and that’s what we do in the cases you refer to.”