The special counsel’s investigation into Donald Trump obtained a search warrant for the former president’s Twitter account. @realDonaldTrumpAccording to the newly unsealed court filing.
The search was so secret that Twitter was barred from telling Trump that a search warrant had been obtained for his account, and Twitter was fined $350,000 for delays in producing records requested under the search warrant.
The special counsel’s office, which is now working on a criminal case against Trump in DC District Court related to Trump’s efforts to disrupt the 2020 presidential election, sought the warrant in January 2023.
Twitter eventually made records, According to the filingNow public on the US Circuit Court of Appeals.
Twitter and special counsel Jack Smith’s office have been litigating for months over whether Trump should have been told about the search warrant.
The controversy came to light Wednesday when the DC Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a decision upholding a district court ruling in favor of banning Twitter from speaking to Trump.
The district court, according to the DC Circuit’s opinion, found that there were “reasonable grounds to believe” that disclosure of the warrant to former President Trump would “seriously prejudice the ongoing investigation.” [or] Notify the confederates.”
The district court concluded that the nondisclosure order was necessary because it “found reason to believe that the former president would ‘flee prosecution,'” according to a footnote.
“However, the government later admitted that it had ‘included escape from prosecution as a pretext’ in its application,” the footnote said. “The district court did not rely on flight risk in its ultimate analysis.”
This story is breaking and will be updated.