Wednesday, May 08, 2024

BOMBSHELL: FBI Staged Fake Photo of Classified Documents for PR Purposes



You know that famous photo of Trump's purloined Top Secret documents? The one that the FBI released that showed all those classified documents hidden in folders?

It's kinda, sorta faked. Staged. Not accurate at all. A sham. A con. Complete BS. 

No, it's not a photoshop. That would be worse, I suppose. Maybe. 

You see, those folders that scream Top Secret were brought by the FBI and the documents were inserted in them by FBI agents

Think about this for a minute. The General Services Administration shipped these documents to Trump, which is why they are stuffed away in Mar a Lago in the first place. Then, the Archives met with the Biden administration to prod it to investigate Trump. 

Then the FBI raids Mar a Lago, armed with folders screaming "Top Secret," photographs them, and releases the photo to the world, suggesting that Trump stole away with these documents in these folders screaming Top Secret. 

Smells like a setup. 

Julie Kelley has the scoop. And it is a big one. 

It is the picture that launched a thousand pearl-clutching articles.

A few weeks after the armed FBI raid of Mar-a-Lago in August 2022, the Department of Justice released a stunning photograph depicting alleged contraband seized from Donald Trump’s Palm Beach estate that day; the image showed colored sheets representing scary classification levels attached to files purportedly discovered in Trump’s private office.

Included as a government exhibit to oppose Trump’s lawsuit requesting a special master to vet the 13,000 items taken from his residence, the crime scene pic immediately went viral—just as Attorney General Merrick Garland, who authorized the unprecedented raid, intended. 

At the time, even regime-friendly mouthpieces questioned the need and optics of the raid; the photo helped juice the DOJ’s justification for the storming of Trump’s castle.

“[The] question of whether Trump had classified material with him at his Mar-a-Lago resort has captured the public’s attention. The photo published by the government appears to answer that question quite affirmatively,” Washington Post resident fact checker Philip Bump wrote on August 31, 2022.

Some of Bump’s colleagues were more hyperbolic. An ex-CIA officer told ABC News the cover sheets indicated the highest level of secrecy, which in the wrong hands could have resulted in murder. “People's lives are truly at stake. Without being melodramatic, anything that helps an adversary identify a human source means life and death," intelligence expert Douglas London melodramatically warned in reaction to the photo.

 The photo was staged precisely to create this outrage. Proof positive that Trump was a Russian spy or something. It is the Steele Dossier reborn. 

The photo was staged. 

The folders weren't there before the FBI TAMPERED WITH EVIDENCE. 


New court filings in Special Counsel Jack Smith’s espionage and obstruction case against Trump and two co-defendants conclusively demonstrate that the government used the cover sheets to deceive the public as well as the court. The photo was a stunt, and one that adds more fuel to this dumpster-fire case.

Jay Bratt, who was the lead DOJ prosecutor on the investigation at the time and now is assigned to Smith’s team, described the photo this way in his August 30, 2022 response to Trump’s special master lawsuit:

“[Thirteen] boxes or containers contained documents with classification markings, and in all, over one hundred unique documents with classification markings…were seized. Certain of the documents had colored cover sheets indicating their classification status. (Emphasis added.) See, e.g., Attachment F (redacted FBI photograph of certain documents and classified cover sheets recovered from a container in the ‘45 office’).”

The DOJ’s clever wordsmithing, however, did not accurately describe the origin of the cover sheets. In what must be considered not only an act of doctoring evidence but willfully misleading the American people into believing the former president is a criminal and threat to national security, agents involved in the raid attached the cover sheets to at least seven files to stage the photo.

Classified cover sheets were not “recovered” in the container, contrary to Bratt’s declaration to the court. In fact, after being busted recently by defense attorneys for mishandling evidence in the case, Bratt had to fess up about how the cover sheets actually ended up on the documents.  

Here is Bratt’s new version of the story, where he finally admits a critical detail that he failed to disclose in his August 2022 filing:

“[If] the investigative team found a document with classification markings, it removed the document, segregated it, and replaced it with a placeholder sheet. The investigative team used classified cover sheets for that purpose.”

 These two stories are different. At all. Last I checked, Judges don't like being lied to. Not even a little bit. The FBI and Special Counsel have been lying to the Court. 

This revelation follows an earlier story in which the FBI admitted to mishandling the documents and scrambling them up, which is never, ever supposed to happen. They are doing a modified limited hangout, admitting that the documents aren't as they found them. 

How much do you want to bet there is a reason for that?

But Jack Smith might have bigger problems. During the raid, agents took a box in its entirety if it contained papers with classified markings; the box usually contained other items, which is how the FBI ended up with so many of Trump’s personal belongings.

So, in order to flag the location of the alleged classified record in the box, agents, as Bratt noted, used the cover sheets as placeholders. (The classified records were then placed in a separate secure file.)

But now defense attorneys claim, and the special counsel concedes, that some placeholders do not match the relevant document. “Following defense counsel’s review of the physical boxes…and the documents produced in classified discovery, defense counsel has learned that the cross-reference provided by the Special Counsel’s Office does not contain accurate information,” attorneys representing Trump’s co-defendant Waltine Nauta wrote in a May 1 motion.

The motion forced the special counsel to admit the error. “In many but not all instances, the FBI was able to determine which document with classification markings corresponded to a particular placeholder sheet,” Bratt wrote.

In other words, in their zeal to stage a phony photo using official classified cover sheets, FBI agents might have failed to accurately match the placeholder sheet with the appropriate document. This is a potentially case-blowing mistake, particularly if the document in question is one of the 34 records that represents the basis of espionage charges against Trump.

 Cases have fallen apart for less. 

Further, the FBI "determined" the documents' classification status at the time of the raid without actually knowing if those documents were classified or not. 

We could have expected the folders to tell us, but it turns out the folders were planted by the FBI. They are not dispositive at all. What appeared to be proof of Trump's guilt means nothing at all. Those could have been newspaper clippings in those folders or nothing at all. 

The intelligence community determined whether the documents remained classified long after the raid, which is why the FBI took all sorts of things from Trump that were purely personal. They had no idea what was classified or not. They wanted everybody to believe they knew, but how could they? A "classified" marking on a document only tells you whether the material was at one time classified, not whether it remains so. 

Which Bratt also admitted is an issue. After the boxes were transported from Florida to the hopelessly corrupt Washington FBI field office (another scandalous aspect of the case since the investigation should have been conducted in southern Florida not in another jurisdiction), a private company took scans of the inside of the boxes. But according to the defense team, the current condition of the boxes does not match the scans taken in August 2022. 

Bratt explained that “there are some boxes where the order of items within that box is not the same as in the associated scans.” He then offered a list of excuses including how some “boxes contain items smaller than standard paper such as index cards, books, and stationary, which shift easily when the boxes are carried, especially because many of the boxes are not full.”

It is safe to assume Judge Cannon will not take these new revelations lightly--particularly since Bratt also had to admit in the same filing that he did not tell her the truth when she asked about the condition of the boxes during a hearing last month. On April 12, Cannon directly asked Bratt, “are the boxes in their original, intact form as seized?” Bratt replied yes, but “with one exception, and that is that the classified documents have been removed and placeholders have been put in the documents [place.]”

 Will any of this matter in the courtroom? Maybe, maybe not. The case is rigged, and the Special Counsel, the FBI, and the Justice Department don't even care if a guilty verdict holds up on appeal. The Judge may, though. And maybe even a jury. 

But this is all about the election, which is why they staged that photo in the first place. 

UPDATE: Unfortunately for Biden, the trial was just delayed because of so many outstanding issues. 



Trump's Florida Trial Postponed 'Indefinitely'

Judge Indefinitely Postpones Trump's Classified Documents Trial