The Justice Department met its Thursday deadline to 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.”
Judge Bruce Reinhart on Monday formally rejected the Justice Department’s argument to keep the Trump raid affidavit sealed.
The judge last Thursday ordered the Justice Department to unseal only a portion of the probable cause affidavit.
Judge Reinhart called the FBI’s raid of Mar-a-Lago “unprecedented.”
“The Government argues that even requiring it to redact portions of the Affidavit that could not reveal agent identities or investigative sources and methods imposes an undue burden on its resources and sets a precedent that could be disruptive and burdensome in future cases,” Reinhart wrote. “I do not need to reach the question of whether, in some other case, these concerns could justify denying public access; they very well might.”
Reinhart said he will review the redactions and make changes if necessary.
The judge also said the media outlets who are parties to the lawsuit can appeal his ruling, Fox News reported.
Major media outlets demanded the release of the probable cause affidavit behind the FBI’s raid of Trump’s Florida residence.
Conservative watchdog Judicial Watch also demanded the release of the affidavit.
Government lawyers argued that keeping the affidavit under seal will ‘protect witnesses’ and ‘FBI agents’ involved.
According to investigative reporter Paul Sperry, the FBI raided Mar-a-Lago in an effort to seize documents that likely implicated the FBI in its Spygate operation which explains why the government is fiercely working to keep the affidavit sealed.