U.S. intelligence officials have resumed a national security risk assessment of potential disclosure of documents former President Donald Trump kept at his home in Florida, a spokesperson with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) has confirmed to The Epoch Times.
“In consultation with the Department of Justice, ODNI is resuming the classification review of relevant materials and assessment of the potential risk to national security that would result from the disclosure of the relevant documents,” the spokesperson said via email.
The ODNI declined to say why the risk assessment was paused.
U.S. authorities have been battling with Trump in court after FBI agents raided his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida in August and seized over 12,000 records, including approximately 100 with classified markings.
Trump asked for a special master to be inserted in the case and an order halting the ability of U.S. officials to analyze the records; U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon, a Trump appointee, granted both requests
“The Court hereby authorizes the appointment of a special master to review the seized property for personal items and documents and potentially privileged material subject to claims of attorney-client and/or executive privilege. Furthermore, in natural conjunction with that appointment, and consistent with the value and sequence of special master procedures, the Court also temporarily enjoins the Government from reviewing and using the seized materials for investigative purposes pending completion of the special master’s review or further Court order,” she wrote in an order on Sept. 5.
But she also made clear that her order did not apply to the risk assessment, which the ODNI announced in August.
“This Order shall not impede the classification review and/or intelligence assessment by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence,” Cannon said.
Department of Justice (DOJ) lawyers argued after the ruling that the order, as structured, did affect the risk assessment, claiming that the process “cannot be readily segregated” from the DOJ and FBI activities in connection with their ongoing criminal investigation into Trump.
The lawyers added that “uncertainty regarding the bounds of the Court’s order and its implications for the activities of the FBI has caused the Intelligence Community, in consultation with DOJ, to pause temporarily this critically important work.”
The DOJ won a partial stay of Cannon’s order on Sept. 21 from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, which found that Cannon “likely erred” both in blocking U.S. officials from accessing the records marked classified for purposes of the Trump investigation and letting the special master, U.S. District Judge Raymond Dearie, a Reagan appointee, review the same records.
That ruling enabled the government to resume using the records for the investigation and led to a new order from Cannon, which said that Dearie cannot review the records in question.
From The Epoch Times