The DOJ's lawyers demanded that the US district court Judge Beryl Howell hold Trump's legal team in contempt of court, reports the Washington Post says, citing an anonymous source.
The Justice Department had previously attempted to retrieve the documents by raiding Trump's Mar a Lago residency in August.
The request came after "months of mounting frustration from the Justice Department with Trump's team," the Post writes, which apparently peaked in June following the Trump team's assurances that "a diligent search had been conducted for classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago Club and residence. But the FBI amassed evidence suggesting — and later confirmed through a court-authorized search — that many more remained."
Trump's legal team has refused to designate a custodian of records to sign a document that would assure that all materials were returned to the government, one source said.
Trump spokesman Steven Cheung told the Post that his lawyers “continue to be cooperative and transparent.” He added: “This is a political witch hunt unlike anything like this country has ever seen.”
A Justice Department spokesman declined to comment to the Post.
Previously, in September, a list of those items seized in the FBI's raid was released, as the decision as to whether or not a "special master" would be assigned to review those documents had not yet been resolved. The special master was eventually granted.
"33 items were listed as part of Exhibit A, with an accounting of what was contained within each item," Libby Emmons wrote for The Post Millennial. "Of those 33 boxes, 16 had documents that were labeled Secret, Top Secret, or Confidential, while the remaining 17 boxes contained either personal items, such as gifts or books, government documents without classification labels, or press materials, such as newspapers and magazines."
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