The judge who approved the search warrant for former President Donald Trump’s South Florida estate is reported to have departed the US Attorney’s office in the area in favor of representing employees of the late financier and convicted sex criminal Jeffrey Epstein.
“My beautiful home, Mar-A-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, is currently under siege, raided, and occupied by a large group of FBI agents,” Mr Trump said in a statement. “They even broke into my safe!”
The former president also claimed that the raid was “unannounced”.
In January, the National Archives and Records Administration found 15 boxes at the estate, including some items “marked as classified national security information,” the Archivist of the United States, David Ferriero, said in a letter to New York Representative Carolyn Maloney, the chair of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, sent in February of this year.
Judge Reinhart was made a magistrate judge in 2018 after spending a decade in private practice. In November of that year, The Miami Herald reported that the judge had represented multiple Epstein staffers in relation to the investigation into allegations of sex trafficking.
The paper reported that Judge Reinhart left the South Florida US Attorney’s office on New Year’s Day in 2008 and began representing Epstein’s employees the next day.
The members of Epstein’s staff that Judge Reinhart represented included his private pilots, scheduler Sarah Kellen, and Nadia Marcinkova, who Epstein is reported to have once called his “Yugoslavian sex slave,” The Post reported.
Ms Kellen and Ms Marcinkova were granted immunity in an agreement with federal prosecutors struck in 2007, allowing Epstein to plead guilty to charges on the state level, rather than the federal level.
He served 13 months in county jail and was allowed to leave the prison to go to work. He was later found dead in August 2019 in an apparent suicide at the Manhattan Correctional Center. At the time, he was awaiting trial on federal charges of sex trafficking.
The Independent has reached out to the Southern District Court of Florida for comment.