Live Updates: Garland Statement on Biden’s Secret Documents

Attorney General Merrick Garland delivered his statement Thursday.
Attorney General Merrick Garland delivered his statement on Thursday. (Olivier Douliery/AFP/Getty Images)

Attorney General Merrick Garland details the timeline of President Joe Biden’s investigation into the potential handling of classified documents.

Here’s what he said:

November 4, 2022: The National Archives Inspector General contacted the prosecutor at the Ministry of Justice in the evening. It informed him that the White House had notified the archives that documents marked with a classification were identified at the offices of the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement in Washington, D.C. That office was not authorized to store confidential documents. The prosecutor was also advised that the documents were secured in the archives.

9 Nov 2022: The FBI begins an assessment that complies with standard protocols to understand whether confidential information has been mishandled in violation of federal law.

November 14, 2022: Pursuant to Section 600.2B of the Special Counsel Rules, Garland has assigned U.S. Attorney John Lausch Jr. to conduct a preliminary investigation to inform my decision whether to appoint a Special Counsel.

“I selected him to conduct a preliminary investigation. Because I am confident that his experience will make the process professional and fast,” he said.

20 December 2022: chairman Biden’s personal counsel informed Lausch that additional documents marked with a secret were identified in the garage of the president’s private residence in Wilmington, Delaware. President Biden’s counsel informed Lausch that the documents were among other records from the period. The FBI president’s vice president goes to the facility and secures those documents.

January 5, 2023: Lausch briefed Garland on the results of his preliminary investigation and suggested that further investigation by the special counsel should be undertaken.

“According to Mr. Lauch’s preliminary investigation, I concluded that under the Special Counsel rules The appointment of the special counsel is in the public interest,” Garland said.

The following day, as Mr. Lauch continued his investigation, The department has identified Mr Maher for appointment as special counsel.

This morning, President Biden’s personal adviser called Mr. Lauch to inform him that additional classified documents had been identified at the president’s private residence in Wilmington, Delaware.

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