Special Counsel Jack Smith received a tremendous amount of data from Twitter about former President Donald Trump’s Twitter account, unsealed court documents (available below) revealed.
Smith was appointed to investigate Trump’s alleged attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 election, including the lead-up to the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol incursion, as well as the former president’s allegedly unlawful retention of classified materials at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.
X, formerly known as Twitter, fought the search warrant so vehemently that U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell questioned whether “the new CEO wants to cozy up with the former president?”
“Twitter has no interest other than litigation [sic] its constitutional rights,” attorney George Varghese of WilmerHale, representing the company, told the judge.
Howell fined the company $350,000 for failing to comply with Smith’s search warrant by the deadline set by the court, Politico reported.
Twitter did comply with the warrant, but not until three days after the deadline, the Daily Caller News Foundation noted.
The warrant sought access to Trump’s direct messages, a list of devices used to log into the president’s account, location information for the user of the account, among other pieces of information.
Twitter’s attorney’s had argued that some of that information might be covered under executive privilege, an argument that the judge found ridiculous, inasmuch as it would have meant that Trump had conducted important government business with senior aides via a social media platform.
Prosecutors had also demanded that the company not inform Trump of the search warrants, which they said was vital to the integrity of the investigation.
“There actually are concrete cognizable reasons to think that if the former president had notice of these covert investigative steps, there would be actual harm and concern for the investigation, for the witnesses going forward,” said Gregory Bernstein, a member of Smith’s team.
The district court initially issued a nondisclosure order barring Twitter from notifying anyone about the warrant, which Twitter contested as a violation of the First Amendment and the Stored Communications Act.
However, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia upheld the lower court’s decision last month.
Moreover, the judge said, Twitter had no knowledge of the evidence presented by the special counsel’s office in the first place, evidence that purportedly explained why informing Trump of the search warrant could have led to witness tampering or other issues that could impact the investigation.
“You don’t even know the half about the very warrant you are coming in here to delay the execution of,” Howell said.
Interested readers may view all 204 pages of the recently unsealed document here:
As the news about the search warrant came out, Trump called Smith a “lowlife” who had committed an “atrocity” by seeking this search warrant.
“How dare lowlife prosecutor, Deranged Jack Smith, break into my former Twitter account without informing me and, indeed, trying to completely hide this atrocity from me,” the former president wrote on TruthSocial. “What could he possibly find out that is not already known. Just like the early morning raid of Mar-a-Lago! Why isn’t the DOJ raiding Crooked Joe Biden, the most CORRUPT (and Incompetent!) President in the history of the United States?”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.