“This was an improper search. They should have enforced the subpoena. That’s what Merrick Garland said the Justice Department generally does—less intrusive methods,” Dershowitz, a former criminal defense attorney, told Fox News.
Elaborating, Dershowitz suggested the Department of Justice and FBI may have violated Trump’s constitutional rights, namely his Fourth Amendment right to privacy.
“The affidavit, if it’s revealed, may indicate reasons why a search warrant had to be effectuated three days after or two and a half days after it was approved,” he said, “but right now, the burden of proof is heavily on the government to justify this intrusive search.”
Department of Justice officials should have to prove whether the search was properly “justified not only under the letter but the spirit of the Fourth Amendment,” he added.
His comment comes as the federal magistrate judge who approved the Aug. 8 search suggested Monday that the affidavit should be partially redacted.
“Particularly given the intense public and historical interest in an unprecedented search of a former President’s residence, the Government has not yet shown that these administrative concerns are sufficient to justify sealing,” Judge Bruce Reinhart wrote in his order.
The Justice Department now has until 12 p.m. on Thursday to submit portions of the document to be redacted, Reinhart said.
More than a week ago, the same judge unsealed the FBI property receipt and a search warrant for Mar-a-Lago, showing that agents took 11 boxes containing allegedly classified material. Trump and former aides have said that the 45th president had a standing order to declassify certain documents.
Trump, meanwhile, has pointed to a Jan. 19, 2021, order that he issued to declassify certain documents relating to the FBI’s