Nuclear secrets found at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago

Recovered material could deepen national security implications of former president’s actions

FBI search warrant affidavit for Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate
FBI search warrant affidavit for Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate
(Image credit: (Mario Tama/Getty Images))

The FBI has recovered a document describing a foreign government’s nuclear capabilities during its search of Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home, according to a report in the US.

Citing unnamed sources, The Washington Post said that as well as details of the foreign power’s nuclear weapons capabilities, information about the unnamed nation’s conventional military defences was also discovered at the Florida resort.

The US newspaper said that some of the 11,000-plus documents seized from Trump’s estate are typically closely guarded and have “a designated control officer” to monitor their location. Even intelligence bosses and national security personnel would not have known about the details found in some of the documents. “Only the president, some members of his Cabinet or a near-Cabinet-level official could authorise other government officials to know details of these special-access programs,” a source said.

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The latest revelation has prompted alarm. “Trump stored another country’s nuclear secrets at f***ing Mar-a-Lago,” said Rolling Stone, while former US department of defense special counsel Ryan Goodman tweeted that “many people are behind bars for far, far less”.

The former US president is already under investigation by the justice department for his unauthorised removal of highly sensitive government records from the White House and for allegedly storing them improperly at Mar-a-Lago.

Following the FBI raid, Trump said the move was “not necessary or appropriate”, adding: “These are dark times for our nation.”

The former US president has insisted that he declassified the documents before leaving the White House last year and described the Department of Justice investigation as part of a politically motivated witch-hunt against him.

As rumours swirl that Trump is planning to run again for the presidency, the controversy may not have dented his popularity, according to The Times, as some polls have shown his support rising among Republican voters following the FBI search.

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Chas Newkey-Burden has been part of The Week Digital team for more than a decade and a journalist for 25 years, starting out on the irreverent football weekly 90 Minutes, before moving to lifestyle magazines Loaded and Attitude. He was a columnist for The Big Issue and landed a world exclusive with David Beckham that became the weekly magazine’s bestselling issue. He now writes regularly for The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Independent, Metro, FourFourTwo and the i new site. He is also the author of a number of non-fiction books.