By Dan Berman, CNN
Former President Donald Trump is reportedly nearing a decision on when to announce a 2024 bid to return to the White House, but his legal troubles continue to build — not just with the recent FBI search at Mar-a-Lago.
Multiple federal and state investigations are ongoing regarding the January 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol, his efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election, his handling of confidential documents and his family business.
Civil lawsuits accusing Trump of defamation and spurring on US Capitol rioters also remain on the docket.
Here’s an updated list of notable investigations and lawsuits:
White House documents: Did Trump mishandle classified material?
The search warrant executed at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida on Monday sent shockwaves through the legal and political worlds and shows the Justice Department’s criminal investigation into the handling of classified information is accelerating.
After days of misinformation on the right about the search, fueled by Trump and his allies, Attorney General Merrick Garland broke his silence on Thursday and announced that the department had filed in court a request that the search warrant and property receipt from the search be unsealed.
The Justice Department has been instructed by the court to confer with Trump about its request to unseal certain warrant documents from the FBI Mar-a-Lago search and to tell the court by 3 p.m. ET on Friday if he opposes their release. On Truth Social late Thursday night, Trump said he would “not oppose the release of documents,” adding, “I am going a step further by ENCOURAGING the immediate release of those documents.”
The National Archives, charged with collecting and sorting presidential material, has previously said that at least 15 boxes of White House records were recovered from Mar-a-Lago — including records that may have been classified. In June, federal investigators served a grand jury subpoena and took away sensitive national security documents.
Then, according to sources who spoke to CNN, prosecutors developed evidence that there were potentially classified documents with national security implications remaining at the property and suspicions that Trump’s team wasn’t being entirely forthcoming. That led the FBI to come in on Monday and remove more boxes from the property.
The Washington Post, citing people familiar with the investigation, reported on Thursday that classified documents relating to nuclear weapons were among the items sought by authorities. CNN has not independently confirmed the report.
Any unauthorized retention or destruction of White House documents raises a red flag under a criminal law that prohibits the removal or destruction of official government records, legal experts tell CNN.
Before the search, CNN revealed earlier this month that Trump lawyers and the DOJ were in direct communication regarding his efforts to shield conversations he had while he was president from federal investigators in the department’s January 6 probe.
January 6 and overturning the election: House select committee and Justice Department
The House select committee investigating the US Capitol attack has uncovered dramatic evidence of Trump’s actions before and on January 6, especially efforts to use the levers of government to overturn the election.
“Over the course of the two months’ worth of hearings, the committee tapped into the hundreds of taped depositions, as well as key witnesses who testified live, to present a devastating case that Trump sought multiple avenues to try to overturn the 2020 presidential election even after he was told he lost, that the former President knew ahead of time January 6 could turn violent, and that he chose not to act when his supporters attacked the Capitol and put the lives of lawmakers — not to mention his own vice president — in danger.”
During the hearings, fingers were pointed at GOP lawmakers and Trump allies who may have tried to help overturn the election and Trump White House officials who failed to stop the former President’s actions.
And dramatically, testimony from a former White House aide described hearing an account of a Trump demand to be driven to the Capitol on January 6 — an account in which Trump was said to have lashed out at Secret Service agents when he was told no.
The Justice Department is watching — and has an investigation of its own — so while there’s an outstanding question if the committee will recommend any charges for DOJ, it’s not a requirement for the feds to act if the committee does make a referral.
2020 Election: Efforts to overturn Georgia results
Fulton County, Georgia, District Attorney Fani Willis is overseeing a special grand jury investigating what Trump or his allies may have done in their efforts to overturn President Joe Biden’s victory in Georgia.
Willis, a Democrat, has informed all 16 of the individuals who signed an “unofficial electoral certificate,” which was ultimately sent to the National Archives in late 2020, that they may be indicted in the probe.
The investigation may be drawing closer to Trump as well. Former Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani is scheduled to appear before the grand jury on August 17.
The probe was launched last year following Trump’s call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, in which he pushed the Republican to “find” votes to overturn the election results.
Willis has also been digging into Trump’s calls with Raffensperger and another official in the Secretary of State’s office; presentations Giuliani made before state lawmakers that were riddled with election falsehoods; a phone call between South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham and Raffensperger; and the sudden resignation of Byung “BJay” Pak, the US attorney for the Northern District of Georgia.
The Justice Department, meanwhile, is looking at an aspect of a plot to put forward fake GOP electors from seven states.
Fake certificates were created by Trump allies in Georgia, Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Nevada and New Mexico, who sought to replace valid presidential electors from their states with a pro-Trump slate.
Trump Organization: NY AG criminal and civil investigation
Trump this week took the Fifth at his deposition in New York Attorney General Letitia James’ investigation of his namesake business in response to hundreds of questions.
The investigation is nearing the end and James’ office said it needed to question the Trump family to determine who had responsibility for the financial statements at the center of the investigation. Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump also recently were deposed and did answer questions. Eric Trump was questioned in 2020 and declined to answer more than 500 questions.
James, a Democrat, has previously said her office uncovered “significant” evidence “indicating that the Trump Organization used fraudulent or misleading asset valuations to obtain a host of economic benefits, including loans, insurance coverage and tax deductions.”
The investigation also includes the role of the company’s long-time appraiser Cushman & Wakefield. (The company denies any wrongdoing.)
Trump has decried the investigation as politically motivated.
“When your family, your company, and all the people in your orbit have become the targets of an unfounded, politically motivated Witch Hunt supported by lawyers, prosecutors, and the Fake News Media, you have no choice” but to invoke the Fifth Amendment, Trump said Wednesday.
Trump Organization: NY DA criminal investigation
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg inherited that office’s probe into Trump’s businesses, but it has slowed significantly.
Prosecutors were focusing on the accuracy of the Trump Organization’s financial statements when seeking financing, people familiar with the matter have told CNN.
Earlier this year, Carey Dunne and Mark Pomerantz, two senior prosecutors on the team, resigned after Bragg informed them that he wasn’t prepared to move forward with criminal charges, CNN’s Kara Scannell reported.
A special grand jury hearing evidence in the case expired in April, but a new one could be seated in the future.
Bragg has maintained the investigation is ongoing and prosecutors are reviewing new evidence. He said he will issue a public statement or an indictment when it’s completed.
Personal finances: Litigation with niece Mary Trump
Trump and his niece Mary are in court over her cut of a 2001 family settlement.
In 2020, Mary Trump sued Trump, his sister Maryanne Trump Barry, a retired judge, and the executor of her late uncle Robert Trump’s estate, alleging “they designed and carried out a complex scheme to siphon funds away from her interests, conceal their grift, and deceive her about the true value of what she had inherited.”
Meanwhile, the former President is suing his niece and The New York Times in New York state court over the disclosure of his tax information.
Defamation: Suit over Trump’s denial of rape claims by E. Jean Carroll
Magazine writer E. Jean Carroll alleged Trump raped her in a New York department store dressing room in the mid 1990s and defamed her when he denied the rape, said she was not his type and alleged she made the claim to boost sales of her book.
Trump and the Justice Department say Trump was a federal employee and his statements denying Carroll’s allegations were made in response to reporters’ questions while he was at the White House. They argue the Justice Department should be substituted as the defendant, which, because the government cannot be sued for defamation, would end the lawsuit.
A federal judge denied that effort. DOJ and Trump appealed the ruling, and no decision has been made.
Trump lost an attempt to countersue earlier this year.
Michael Cohen: Claims of retaliation against Trump and Barr
Trumps’ former lawyer, Michael Cohen, is suing Trump, former Attorney General William Barr and others, alleging they put him back in jail to prevent him from promoting his upcoming book while under home confinement.
Cohen was serving the remainder of his sentence for lying to Congress and campaign violations at home, due to Covid-19 concerns, when he started a social media campaign in summer 2020. In retaliation, Cohen says he was sent back to prison and spent 16 days in solitary.
A hearing was held in early August on Trump’s bid to dismiss the lawsuit; a ruling has not yet been issued.
Tax returns: Will Congress see them?
Democratic lawmakers are still trying to get hold of Trump’s tax records from the Internal Revenue Service.
A federal appeals court on Tuesday sided with a House Ways and Means Committee request — originally made in 2019 — to obtain the returns, upholding a ruling from a Trump-nominated district court judge.
But Trump can appeal to the full circuit court or to the Supreme Court, and so far he has not shied away from throwing all legal arguments forward to prevent his tax records from being released to Congress or state investigators.
January 6: Lawsuits by police officers
Several members of the US Capitol Police and Washington, DC, Metropolitan Police are suing Trump, saying his words and actions incited the riot. Their cases were merged with a similar case filed by Democratic lawmakers.
The various cases accuse Trump of directing assault and battery; aiding and abetting assault and battery; and violating local Washington, DC, laws that prohibit incitement of riots and disorderly conduct.
A federal judge in February said Trump’s statements to his supporters before the riot are “the essence of civil conspiracy,” and lawsuits by the police officers have been allowed to proceed. Trump is challenging the judge’s ruling in a federal appeals court.
Trump and his top advisers have not been charged with any crimes. Trump and others who are sued have argued they are not responsible for the actions of the people who stormed the Capitol.
Peter Strzok lawsuit
Former top FBI counter-intelligence official Peter Strzok, who was terminated by the FBI in 2018 after the revelation of anti-Trump texts Strzok exchanged with a top lawyer at the bureau, Lisa Page, has sued DOJ alleging he was improperly terminated. Strzok is now seeking to depose Trump for the case, though the judge has not said yet how she’ll rule on a DOJ request to block the deposition.
Strzok and Page were constant targets of verbal attacks by Trump and his allies as part of the larger ire Trump expressed toward the FBI during the Trump-Russia investigation. Trump repeatedly and publicly called for Strzok’s ouster until Strzok was fired in August 2018.
Biden has until mid-October to determine whether he will assert executive privilege and hinder Strzok’s effort to obtain testimony from Trump.
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CNN’s Kara Scannell, Tierney Sneed, Andrew Millman, Jeremy Herb and Jason Morris contributed to this report.