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A special prosecutor was appointed to investigate the classified documents found at Joe Biden’s house

Joe Biden (Reuters/Jonathan Ernst)
Joe Biden (Reuters/Jonathan Ernst)

the attorney general merrick garland appointed a special prosecutor on Thursday to investigate the presence of documents with classified marks found at President Joe Biden’s home in Wilmington, Delaware, and at an office in Washington.

The announcement followed Biden’s acknowledgment Thursday morning that a document with classified markings from his time as vice president was found in his personal library, along with other documents found in his garage. Garland said Biden’s lawyers informed the Justice Department Thursday morning of the discovery of a classified document at Biden’s home, after FBI agents first recovered other documents from his garage in December. . On Monday it was revealed that confidential documents were found in the office of his former institute in Washington.

robert hur, the former Trump-appointed federal attorney in Maryland, will lead the investigation, replacing the Justice Department’s top prosecutor in Chicago, John Lausch, whom the department previously assigned to investigate the matter. Hur will start his work soon.

The appointment of yet another special prosecutor to investigate the handling of classified documents is a remarkable turn of events, legally and politically, for a Justice Department that has spent months investigating Donald Trump’s withholding of more than 300 documents with classification marks found at the former president’s estate in Florida.

Although the situations differ in fact and law, the discovery of classified documents in two separate locations linked to Biden, as well as the appointment of a new special counsel, would almost certainly complicate any prosecution the department might bring against Trump.

Biden told reporters at the White House that he was “fully and completely cooperating” with a Justice Department investigation into how classified information and government records were being stored. He did not say when the latest set of documents was found, only that his lawyers’ review of possible storage locations was completed Wednesday night. Lawyers found the first in a locked cabinet at the Biden Penn Center offices in Washington on Nov. 2, just before the midterm elections, but publicly disclosed that development only on Monday.

Richard Sauber, a special counsel to the president, said that after Biden’s personal lawyers found the initial documents, they looked at other places where the records might have been sent after Biden left the vice presidency in 2017.

Sauber said a “small number” with classified markings was found in a storage space in Biden’s garage in Wilmington, with a document located in an adjacent room. Biden later revealed that the other location was his personal library.

Biden said the Justice Department was “immediately notified” after the documents were located and the department’s lawyers took custody of the records. The first batch of documents had been delivered to the National Archives and Records Administration.

Hur was a close ally of former assistant attorney general Rod Rosenstein, a key figure in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 US election and contacts between then-candidate Trump’s associates and Russian officials. He also worked as an adviser to FBI Director Christopher Wray at the Justice Department.

The new speaker of the House of Representatives, Kevin McCarthy, a Republican from California, said of the latest news: “I think Congress has to investigate this.”

“Here’s a person who sat on ’60 Minutes’ who was so concerned about President Trump’s documents locked behind, and now we find out that this is a vice president who kept them on display for years in different places.”

Contradicting several fellow Republicans, he said, “We don’t think a special prosecutor is necessary.”

The revelation that Biden’s team discovered additional classified documents came hours after White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre evaded questions about Biden’s handling of classified information and management of the discovery. by the West Wing.

She had said on Wednesday that the White House was committed to handling the matter in the “right way,” pointing to the immediate notification of the national files by Biden’s personal lawyers.

But he declined to say when Biden himself was informed, whether there were further classified documents potentially located in other unauthorized locations and why the White House waited more than two months to disclose the discovery of the initial batch of documents.

Biden has said he was “shocked to learn that there are government records that were brought there to that office,” but his lawyers “did what they should have done” when they immediately called the National Archives.

(With information from AP)

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