Trump news – latest: FBI boss reveals 'deplorable' Mar-a-Lago threats as former president pleads Fifth Amendment in NY

Trump news today: Ex-president pleads fifth amendment 440 times as Trumpworld hunts Mar-a-Lago raid informant

Eric Trump blames Biden administration after FBI raid on Mar-A-Lago

As the fallout from the FBI’s raid on Mar-a-Lago continues with rumors of a Trumpworld informant tipping off authorities, Mr Trump yesterday pleaded the fifth amendment 440 times in his sworn deposition to the long-running New York State probe into his real estate dealings.

Mr Trump has repeatedly condemned the investigation as a politically motivated “witch hunt”. His children Ivanka and Donald Jr both recently gave depositions in the civil investigation after months fighting subpoenas for their testimony.

Meanwhile, reports have revealed that the FBI’s raid on Mar-a-Lago may have been spurred by an informant at the resort tipping the bureau off that Mr Trump and his team had not handed over all the relevant documents stored at the ex-president’s Florida residence. It is not yet clear who the informant might be, but the Monday raid saw agents searching private areas including a bedroom.

The former president and some members of his legal team have claimed without providing proof that agents may have planted evidence at his home.


Trumpworld smells a rat. Has someone in his inner circle flipped?

Along with general outrage at the FBI’s raid on Mar-a-Lago, Trumpworld is seeing rumors that a close aid to the former president “flipped” and told the bureau off to the alleged existence of whatever it was agents were searching for on Monday .

With rampant speculation as to who flipped when and why, Richard Hall looks at the possible candidates.


‘Self-professed’ white supremacist gets jail for Jan 6 riot

A Maryland man — described by the FBI as a “self-professed” white supremacist — was sentenced on Wednesday to four months of jail for storming the US Capitol while wearing a court-mandated device that tracked his movements, court records show.


Is Trump being investigated over national security concerns under the Espionage Act?

The potential criminal violations at issue in the FBI’s Mar-a-Lago search could be more severe than simple breach of records law, John Bowden writes.

One possibility that has begun to be discussed by analysts familiar with presidential records procedures is an alleged breach of the Espionage Act, a World War I-era law most known for dealing with the theft of information that could harm national security.

While the law typically is thought to involve acts of spying against the United State (hence the name), it also contains one provision that could very well deal with the situation that has arisen at Mr Trump’s resort home: the handling of classified documents related to US defense policy or capabilities, and the punishments for negligent management of such files.

The Act specifically states that anyone who “through gross negligence permits [such documents] to be removed from [their] proper place of custody” can face a fine or imprisonment of up to ten years.

Read the full piece here:


Why doesn’t Donald Trump release the FBI search warrant for Mar-a-Lago?

The former president either does not have the warrant, is hiding its potentially damaging allegations, or is using the political firestorm to his advantage as 2024 looms, Oliver O’Connell writes.

Read the full story here:


Has someone in Trump’s inner circle flipped?

With each passing day, it becomes harder for a casual observer to distinguish between the post-presidential life of Donald Trump and that of late-season Tony Soprano.

In the past week alone, Mr Trump’s home has been searched by the FBI as part of an investigation into his handling of classified documents, he has pleaded the Fifth in a separate case into his business dealings in New York, and now, according to several reports, he is trying to flush out a rat in his orbit.

Read more from The Independent‘s Richard Hall.


‘Dark Brandon’ is reclaiming far-right memes, but experts have a warning…

After a string of “good news” for the Biden agenda, White House officials elevated a meme from terminally online obscurity, reclaiming ironic images of a tired and gaffe-prone president cast as a demi-god-like figure.

Alex Woodward reports on the “Dark Brandon” phenomenon.


GOP congressman whose phone was seized by FBI goes silent on Fox News

Hardcore right-wing Arizona Congressman Scott Perry saw the FBI seize his cell phone on Tuesday, with the precise reason still unclear. However, it is reported to be in connection with the bureau’s probe into plans to overturn the 2020 election via the deployment of fake voters in Congress on 6 January 2021.

Mr Perry was outraged by the seizure of his phone, and appeared on Fox News last night to discuss it. But when asked whether the FBI has got his phone back, he went eerily silent:

Mr Perry’s name has come up in the 6 January hearings, where it was revealed that he sought a blanket pardon from the Trump White House after the Capitol attack – this having been an enthusiastic participant in efforts to subvert Joe Biden’s victory.

Graeme Massie has more on the still-mysterious phone incident.


Christopher Wray makes first public response to FBI search of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home

FBI Director Christopher Wray spoke publicly on Wednesday afternoon for the first time about his bureau’s search of former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence. I couldn’t offer much.


FBI director calls online threats against federal agents and DOJ ‘deplorable’

FBI Director Christopher Wray called threats circulating online against federal agents and the Justice Department “deplorable and dangerous.”

“I’m always concerned about threats to law enforcement,” Mr Wray said. “Violence against law enforcement is not the answer, no matter who you’re upset with.”

Mr Wray spoke on Wednesday afternoon for the first time about the FBI’s search of former president Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence – though he declined to go into details.

“As I’m sure you can appreciate, that’s not something I can talk about,” Mr Wray told reporters in Omaha, Nebraska.


‘We owe you big’: Jon Stewart receives standing ovation at PACT Act signing

Comedian and activist Jon Stewart received a standing ovation as President Joe Biden signed into law the PACT Act, which will provide life-saving care to veterans who have been exposed to burn pits.

Mr Biden personally thanked Mr Stewart for his advocacy on the issue during Wednesday’s White House signing, saying: “What you have done, Jon, matters, and you know it does. You should know it really, really matters.

“You refused to let anybody forget, you refused to let them forget, and we owe you big man, we owe you big.”