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This is how the findings of classified documents affecting Biden, Trump and Pence compare


We tell you how the cases of classified documents in the possession of President Joe Biden, former President Donald Trump and former Vice President Mike Pence differ.

The differences between Biden and Trump classified documents 3:39

Washington (CNN) --

President Joe Biden, former President Donald Trump and former Vice President Mike Pence face scrutiny over their possible mishandling of classified documents.

In all three cases, confidential government material was found in places where it should not have gone.

But there are key differences that distinguish each situation, including how Biden, Trump and Pence responded to the discovery of the documents and how aggressively the Justice Department is currently investigating.

These are the similarities and differences between the cases of Biden, Trump and Pence.

how they were discovered

The Biden and Pence situations are similar: Their lawyers discovered the classified documents, alerted the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), and turned over the papers.

In Biden's case, FBI agents later found additional documents when they searched her home in Wilmington, Delaware.

Trump followed a different path.

When he left the White House, NARA realized that material was missing.

In May 2021, they contacted Trump's lawyers, who negotiated for months for the voluntary return of several boxes of important documents.

  • First on CNN: Two people who searched Trump properties for classified documents testified before a grand jury in the Mar-a-Lago case

The Justice Department obtained a subpoena in May 2022, a year after the initial NARA alert, after suspecting that Trump was still keeping some classified files.

Trump returned more files but did not return everything he had in his possession.

Later in August, the FBI executed a search warrant at his Mar-a-Lago resort, where more documents were found.

The raid marked the first time in US history that a former president's home was searched as part of a criminal investigation.

how many were found

In the case of Biden, the exact number is unknown.

Before the FBI searched Biden's Wilmington home, some 20 classified documents had been recovered.

The FBI discovered even more classified files during that search, but neither party has publicly disclosed the specific number of additional documents found.

In Trump's case, more than 325 classified files have been recovered.

This includes documents voluntarily returned to NARA, turned over to the Department of Justice under subpoena, and found by the FBI.

As for Pence's situation, CNN reported that his team found about a dozen documents at his Indiana home.


    Storm of classified documents found at Pence's house could be good news for Biden and Trump

classification level

Some of Biden's documents were marked "top secret," which is the highest level of classification.

Some of those documents had an "SCI" ​​designation, which stands for "compartmentalized sensitive information" and refers to extremely sensitive material obtained from US intelligence sources.

At least 60 of Trump's documents were labeled "top secret," including some files marked SCI.

There were also some documents with the "SAP" designation, which stands for "Special Access Programs" and is used for documents that are closely guarded with special protocols for who can access the material.

A source briefed on some of Pence's documents previously told CNN that the government documents recovered from his home were classified as "lower level," without any SCI or SAP markings.

Investigation Status

Attorney General Merrick Garland commissioned special prosecutors to investigate Biden and Trump.

The Trump affair is being investigated by special counsel Jack Smith, who was appointed in November.

And the Biden affair is being investigated by special counsel Robert Hur, who was appointed in January.

CNN previously reported that the FBI and Justice Department are conducting a review of Pence's documents and how they ended up at his home.

This is less than a full-blown criminal investigation.

Research progress

The Trump investigation is the one that has advanced the most.

Federal prosecutors obtained a subpoena, demanded the return of all classified documents and tried to hold Trump in contempt when he failed to fully comply.

Investigators also got a judge to approve a search warrant for Mar-a-Lago, and CNN reported that there is an active Washington-based grand jury that recently heard witness statements.

There are no known subpoenas or search warrants in the Biden investigation, although the FBI has conducted voluntary interviews with some of the people on Biden's team who handled documents.

There are no known subpoenas, search warrants or FBI interviews in the Pence-related review.

  • First on CNN: National Archives asks former presidents and vice presidents to check if they have confidential or presidential documents


Both Biden and Pence maintain that they made early commitments to NARA to return the missing documents and that they are fully cooperating with the Department of Justice.

Whether intentional or not, Trump repeatedly missed an opportunity to return the documents to the government.

Prosecutors ultimately concluded that there may have been intentional efforts to withhold the documents, and Trump is under investigation for possible obstruction.

classified documents

Source: cnnespanol

All news articles on 2023-02-02

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