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Live Reporting

Edited by Chris Giles

All times stated are UK

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  1. Thanks for joining us

    Today's live page was brought to you by: Jude Sheerin, Francesca Gillett, Thomas Spender, Catherine Evans, Jack Burgess, Anna Boyd, Krystyna Gajda, James Harness, Bernd Debusmann, Sam Cabral, Emily McGarvey, James Clarke, Ben Tobias, Alexandra Fouche, Jeremy Gahagan and Chris Giles.

    You can read more on this story here.

  2. What's been happening?

    Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Donald Trump's Florida residence

    We're bringing our live coverage to a close shortly, but before we go here’s a look at the main developments in the FBI search of former President Donald Trump’s Florida home

    • The FBI entered Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach last night, in what was reportedly linked to an investigation into his handling of classified and sensitive material
    • Donald Trump condemned the action as “a raid,” saying agents had broken open a safe in his home as part of their search
    • The FBI and Department of Justice have yet to comment on the search
    • Former US Vice President Mike Pence has called on US Attorney General Merrick Garland to give a "full accounting" to the public of why the search warrant was carried out
    • Meanwhile, White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters that President Joe Biden was given no advance notice by the FBI of the raid, and that he "learned about this from public reports"
    • Trump's allies in Congress have vowed to launch an investigation if they win back control of the House and Senate in November's mid-term elections, in which the balance of power in Washington will be decided
  3. WATCH: Biden not given a 'heads up' - White House

    President Joe Biden was not given a 'heads up' about the FBI's search on Trump's Mar-a-Lago home, says White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.

    Video content

    Video caption: Trump home search: Biden not given a 'heads up' - White House
  4. Trump a counter-intelligence nightmare, says ex-FBI agent

    A former FBI special agent has told CNN the Trump investigation shows there is a "national security threat".

    Asha Rangappa says the former president is "a counter-intelligence nightmare".

    She says the large number of visitors to Mar-a-Lago could make it very dangerous if classified documents had been kept there.

    Quote Message: I think it's important to underscore that because these involve classified documents, this is a national security investigation.
    Quote Message: There's an ongoing national security threat. You can imagine the kinds of secrets that make their way to the White House, specifically to the desk of the president.
    Quote Message: They can be a threat to our national security, they can get sources killed, they can compromise sources of information that we have if they get into the wrong hands." from Asha Rangappa Former FBI special agent
    Asha RangappaFormer FBI special agent
  5. 'Imagine what they can do to you' says Republican representative

    New York Republican Congresswoman Elise Stefanik has suggested that the FBI carrying out a search warrant at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago property is something that could happen to ordinary Americans.

    "If the FBI can raid a US president, imagine what they can do to you," she wrote on Twitter.

    Stefanik is one of a number of Republican opponents of the Biden administration who have vowed to investigate the Justice Department if the Republicans take control of the House of Representatives in the upcoming midterm elections.

    View more on twitter

    Another Representative, Ohio Republican and close Trump ally Jim Jordan, used a quote from Trump to make a similar point.

    "Always remember, they are coming after me because I'm fighting for you," he wrote on Twitter.

  6. WATCH: FBI doing political hit job on Trump - ex-president's supporters

    Supporters of Donald Trump have been speaking to the BBC's Chi Chi Izundu in Florida about the search of his Mar-a-Lago home in Palm Beach.

    One told us "we feel the FBI is doing a political hit job," adding he wanted to show his support for the former president.

    Video content

    Video caption: The FBI is doing a political hit job on Trump - ex-president's supporters say
  7. House Republicans to meet with Trump tonight

    Michelle Fleury

    Reporting from Bedminster, New Jersey

    Trump estate in Bedminster, New Jersey
    Image caption: The entrance to Donald Trump's estate in Bedminster, New Jersey

    A day after the FBI executed a search warrant at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, Donald Trump has gone to his summer residence in Bedminster, New Jersey.

    Security at the golf course, accessible via a country road which takes you past several farms, was tight – with some VIP guests expected later today.The former president is to meet with about a dozen House Republicans, a day after the FBI executed a search warrant at his Florida home.

    The former president will dine with members of the House Republican Study Committee, a conservative caucus group, today at his golf club in Bedminster New Jersey.

    The dinner had been in the works for weeks but has now taken on an air of soldiers rallying around their general.

    In a show of solidarity, several Republicans have condemned the investigation and pledged to investigate the Department of Justice if elected in November’s midterm elections.

    Bedminster, New Jersey
    Image caption: The approach to Trump's estate in Bedminster, New Jersey
  8. White House learned of Mar-a-Lago search through 'public reports', says spokesperson

    White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre

    Nobody at the White House was briefed about or aware of the search warrant carried out at Donald Trump's Mar-A-Lago estate, according to White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.

    Speaking to reporters at the White House on Tuesday, Jean-Pierre said that President Biden's staff learned of the search through "public reports".

    Despite repeated questions from the gathered press corps, Jean-Pierre declined to comment on the raid and referred questions to the Justice Department.

    "The Justice Department conducts investigations independently and we leave any law enforcement matters to them," she said.

    While she declined to comment on what President Biden thinks of the search, she said that he has been "unequivocal" in his belief in the rule of law.

    She also quoted a 7 January 2021 speech in which Biden vowed to "restore the integrity" of the Justice Department.

  9. Possibility of damning evidence in documents - Trump's former chief of staff

    Mick Mulvaney acted as Donald Trump's chief of staff from January 2019 until March 2020
    Image caption: Mick Mulvaney acted as Donald Trump's chief of staff from January 2019 until March 2020

    Mick Mulvaney, Donald Trump's former Chief of Staff, says the FBI search of Trump's Mar-a-Lago home - where he reportedly took government documents when he left office - is either "the most egregious political hit job in history or part of the most significant criminal investigation in our history".

    Speaking to the BBC, Mulvaney says that during his time at the White House, he was in charge of running the West Wing where he ensured documents were preserved.

    "When the law says you have to preserve everything, that's everything - a scratch pad, a newspaper the president had seen, it could be something very serious or something trivial, such as a menu with Boris Johnson, for example," he says.

    "If that's all they're looking for, technical violations of the law, then this is a tremendous overreach by the department of justice (DoJ).

    "If on the other hand, it's somehow tied to a very serious charge of trying to interfere with the transition of authority to the Biden administration, and if the DoJ thinks there might be documents the president retained at Mar-a-Lago that speak to say, conversations with the right wing extremists and the rioters, then that's very serious."

    He said "complete incompetence" could explain why Donald Trump reportedly took so many documents from the White House when his presidency ended.

    "Is it possible there's something in that stack that is very damning to the president? Yes there is. And if there is, I hope that's what the DoJ was looking for."

  10. Search warrant will have been 'most scrutinised in history' - state attorney

    Video content

    Video caption: WATCH: The State Attorney for Palm Beach Dave Aronberg reflects on the Mar-a-Lago search

    More comments now from Dave Aronberg, the State Attorney for Palm Beach in Florida.

    Aronberg says his office had no prior warning about the FBI's search of President Trump's Mar-a-Lago home. He says such secrecy is normal for "the Feds", especially when it involves "something so sensitive", such as searching the home of a former president.

    He pushes back against claims the search was politically motivated.

    Aronberg thinks the judge who granted the search warrant will have scrutinised it more than "any other in history" due to the request being so unprecedented.

  11. What's been happening?

    A gardener works at Trump's Mar-a-Lago home after former US President Donald Trump said FBI agents raided it, in Palm Beach, Florida, US
    Image caption: The FBI carried out a warranted search of Trump's Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida

    If you're just joining us or need a catch-up, here's a look at the key developments in the FBI search on former President Donald Trump’s Florida home, Mar-a-Lago, in Palm Beach.

    • The FBI search is reportedly part of an investigation into whether Trump brought classified records from the White House to his Florida residence - Trump said the residence was raided by the FBI, and that agents broke open a safe
    • The Republican party is reportedly trying to leverage anger over the FBI's search of Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence to fundraise for Republican Party candidates ahead of US midterm elections
    • Former US Vice President Mike Pence has called on US Attorney General Merrick Garland to give a "full accounting" to the public of why the search warrant was carried out
    • About two dozen Trump supporters have lined the state road outside the property in West Palm Beach, waving flags and carrying Trump 2020 banners
    • Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi agreed the FBI search is a "pretty serious step", adding that not even a former president is "above the law"
  12. Who does the FBI report to?

    FBI Director Christopher Wray
    Image caption: Christopher Wray was appointed as FBI Director in 2017

    The FBI’s search of Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home was kept firmly under wraps until Trump himself announced it to the world.

    Even President Joe Biden was given no notice of it happening, a senior White House official told CBS.

    So who did know about it?

    The FBI reports to the US Attorney General, the nation’s top lawyer, and its activities are overseen by the Director of National Intelligence. The bureau does not report directly to the White House.

    Any search warrant like this has to be signed off by a judge. To do so, investigators must demonstrate that there is probable cause for the search, which essentially boils down to whether it is reasonable to believe that a crime has been or is being committed.

    But given the explosive ramifications of this search in particular, many political analysts believe the approval would have had to come from the highest level.

    That would likely include FBI Director Christopher Wray – who was appointed by Trump when he was president – and also his boss, the current attorney general Merrick Garland.

  13. WATCH: Protesters gather at Trump Tower

    Supporters and opponents of Donald Trump have held up placards and banners outside Trump Tower in New York.

    The building on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue serves as the headquarters for the Trump Organization.

    Video content

    Video caption: People have gathered at Trump Tower following the FBI raid at Mar-a-Lago
  14. Mike Pence calls for 'full accounting' of Mar-a-Lago search

    Mike Pence
    Image caption: Mike Pence at an event on 3 August

    Former US Vice President Mike Pence has called on US Attorney General Merrick Garland to give a "a full accounting" to the public of why the search warrant was carried out at former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate.

    In a series of Tweets, Pence - who has distanced himself from Trump amid speculation he may launch a 2024 presidential run - said that he shares "a deep concern" over the "unprecedented" search of Trump's property.

    "No former President of the United States has ever been subject to a raid of their personal residence in American history," he wrote.

    Additionally, Pence said that the search "undermines public confidence in our system of justice."

    "Attorney General [Merrick] Garland must give a full accounting to the American people as to why this action was taken and he must do so immediately," he added.

  15. Top Republican calls for 'immediate' FBI briefing over search

    The lead Republican member of the House Intelligence Committee has called for the director of the FBI to give an "immediate briefing" about the information that led to the search warrant conducted at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence.

    In a letter directed to FBI Director Christopher Wray, Rep. Mike Turner called the search warrant "unprecedented" in US history.

    Turner also said that as the committee's ranking member, he is "unaware of any actual or alleged national security threat posed by any information, data, or documents in the possession of former President Trump".

    "Congress deserves immediate answers from you as to the actions you ordered," the letter adds.

  16. US 'is not some banana republic', says former senator

    Former Senator Doug Jones

    A former US Senator once considered a leading contender to be Joe Biden's attorney general has said that the US "is not some banana republic" that conducts searches without cause.

    In an interview with the BBC, ex-Alabama Senator Doug Jones - a former US district attorney - said the search warrant on Donald Trump's property at Mar-a-Lago is a sign of the checks and balances that "the constitution envisions".

    "This is not some banana republic where the government just breaks down the door and barges in," he said. "This is a process that is set up in the constitution of the United States and it appears to be followed to the letter here."

    Jones also said that despite mounting pressure on the justice department to be more "forthcoming" with any investigation into former President Trump, doing so would be "inconsistent" with departmental guidelines.

    "I don't believe the Department of Justice will or should succumb to that pressure," he said.

    "I think it would be a big mistake for the future of that department to break with that long-standing policy."

  17. Trump supporters hold protest outside Mar-a-Lago

    Chi Chi Izundu

    Reporting from Mar-a-Lago

    A Trump supporter named Ralph protesting the FBI's decision to raid former President Donald Trump's residence in Florida
    Image caption: About two dozen Trump supporters are protesting outside Trump's Florida residence

    Even though Donald Trump isn’t here and Mar-a-Lago is closed during the summer months, about two dozen loyal supporters, in the blazing sun of West Palm Beach, have lined the state road outside the property, waving flags and carrying Trump 2020 banners.

    They've been taking the opportunity to tell the members of press camped here that we are reporting “fake news”.

    One man whispered as we walked past: “This whole thing is crazy. It’s all nonsense."

    Support for the former president was also reflected by cars beeping their horns as they drove past.

    Justin, who lives up the road from the complex, was being stopped and asked whether the many flags he was carrying were for sale.

    “No,” he replied, “just support”.

    He called the execution of the FBI warrant “lies”, while Adrienne, waving her American flag, encouraged “people with a voice” to show their support.

  18. In pictures: Tight security outside Mar-a-Lago after FBI search

    Security guards walk outside Mar-a-Lago, the residence of former president Donald Trump, amid reports of the FBI executing a search warrant as a part of a document investigation, in Palm Beach, Florida, USA,
    Image caption: Security guards were seen walking outside Mar-a-Lago today after the Florida home belonging to ex-President Trump was searched by the FBI
    A secret service guard with a rifle is seen standing next to two other guards and a golf buggy
    Image caption: Guards were also seen patrolling the perimeter of the residence in Palm Beach
    Supporters of former US President Donald Trump stand outside Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence holding US flags
    Image caption: Some Trump supporters gathered outside to show their support to the former president
  19. 'Outrageous' search politically motivated, says Republican strategist

    Supporters of Donald Trump are speaking up today, with many backing the former president's assertion that Monday's FBI search is part of a Democrat strategy to stop him from running for office again in 2024. Among them is Republican strategist Seth Weathers, who calls the operation at Trump's Florida home "truly, unbelievably outrageous".

    Speaking to the BBC, Weathers says a precedent has been set that he thinks is "going to be very hard to take back".

    He claims the legal authorisation of the search warrant was politically motivated, and says the "overreach" from Joe Biden's administration has reached levels "I don't think many people thought would happen".

    President Biden has tried to distance himself from the justice department, and a White House official has said he was given no advanced notice of Mondays's FBI search.

    According to former US district attorney for Idaho, Wendy Olson, granting the FBI a search warrant would not be politically motivated. Olson says the warrant would have been subject to a “rigorous application”, signed off and vetted by those at the “highest levels” of the Department of Justice and the FBI - including the Trump-appointed FBI director Chris Wray.

  20. Reality Check

    Is Trump right about Hillary Clinton's emails?

    Hillary Clinton at podium
    Image caption: The emails date back to when Hillary Clinton was US Secretary of State

    In Trump's statement about Monday's FBI search, he reacted angrily and compared his situation to that of his former Democratic rival Hillary Clinton.

    “Hillary Clinton was allowed to delete… 33,000 emails after they were subpoenaed by Congress. Absolutely nothing has happened to hold her accountable," he claimed.

    This claim refers to an investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server for government business, which is against official protocol. In March 2015, after she’d left office as secretary of state, the company that maintained her email server deleted the archive mailbox, erasing about 32,000 emails, including some from when she was in her official role.

    This happened after Congress had already asked Clinton to hand over any work-related emails. She did hand over thousands of other emails, and said she believed the deleted emails were not work-related.

    The FBI later investigated and found she was “extremely careless” with government material.

    But it said there was no evidence of collusion between her and the company that maintained the server to improperly delete work-related emails, or that Clinton was “allowed” to delete these emails as Trump suggests.