Updated Trump indictment reveals new charges in classified documents case

DOJ via US Southern District of Florida

(WASHINGTON) -- The Department of Justice's superseding indictment of former President Donald Trump and two co-defendants revealed new allegations that they allegedly mishandled government documents and plotted to block the federal investigation.

Carlos De Oliveira, the head of maintenance at the Florida residence, has been charged along with Trump and Walt Nauta, Trump's valet, with conspiracy to obstruct justice.

The updated indictment, released Thursday, also charged the three defendants with two new obstruction counts based on new details about an alleged attempt to delete Mar-a-Lago security footage.

Alleged discussions over Mar-a-Lago security footage

The three defendants had been engaged in several discussions about the security camera footage, which was the subject of a federal subpoena issued on June 24, 2022, according to the indictment.

On June 27, 2022, De Oliveira walked to Mar-a-Lago's IT department and asked the department's director to come with him, the indictment said. The two allegedly went into an "audio closet" near the White and Gold ballroom, and De Oliveira allegedly told the employee that "the boss" wanted the server deleted, the indictment alleges.

De Oliveira also allegedly asked the unidentified employee how long the server kept footage, to which the employee responded approximately 45 days, according to the indictment.

"What are we going to do?" De Oliveira allegedly said.

Later in the day, De Oliveira spoke with Nauta over text and in person, and De Oliveira spoke with Trump in person, the indictment said.

At this time, it isn't known if the security footage was deleted.

More details disclosed in Trump classified document conversation

The superseding indictment now charges Trump with allegedly possessing the classified document that he was previously heard on audio tape discussing during a July 21, 2021, interview at his Bedminster estate.

The discussion was previously described in the special counsel's first version of the indictment, where Trump is heard appearing to acknowledge he held onto a sensitive military document after leaving office -- but could no longer declassify it because he was no longer president.

"Wait a minute, let's see here. I just found, isn't that amazing?" Trump says in the recording, which was later obtained by ABC News. "This totally wins my case, you know. Except it is like, highly confidential. Secret. This is secret information. Look, look at this. This was done by the military and given to me. As president, I could have declassified, but now I can't."

Trump gave an interview to Fox News after his indictment where he denied that the material in his possession at Bedminster was a classified document and claimed they were copies of newspaper articles and magazines.

The superseding indictment alleged that the specific document cited by Trump in the exchange did indeed have a classified marking of "TOP SECRET//NOFORN" and involved a "Presentation concerning military activity in a foreign country."

The indictment alleged the document was unlawfully in his possession until Jan. 17, 2022, which is the date of Trump's handover of 15 boxes to the National Archives.

De Oliveira's alleged false statements

De Oliveira also faces a charge of making false statements and representations during a voluntary interview he gave to the FBI in January where he repeatedly answered "no" when asked if, at the end of Trump’s presidency, he was part of any group involved in helping move and unload boxes at Mar-a-Lago.

The indictment lists numerous occasions where De Oliveira moved boxes of classified documents to the estate.

De Oliveira is scheduled to appear in federal court in Florida on Monday. He hasn't made a public statement about the indictment as of Friday morning.

Trump and Nauta have previously pleaded not guilty to the charges contained in the original indictment.

In a statement, the Trump campaign claims these charges are aimed to "harass" Trump and his allies. The statement went on to attack President Joe Biden and Special Counsel Jack Smith.

Friday, July 28, 2023 at 11:03AM by Alexander Mallin and Ivan Pereira, ABC News Permalink