World

Search warrant for Twitter to turn over information on Donald Trump’s account

Special counsel Jack Smith speaks to the media (J Scott Applewhite/AP)
Special counsel Jack Smith speaks to the media (J Scott Applewhite/AP) Special counsel Jack Smith speaks to the media (J Scott Applewhite/AP)

Special counsel Jack Smith’s team obtained a search warrant in January for records related to former president Donald Trump’s Twitter account.

And a judge levied a 350,000 dollar (£275,000) fine on the company for a delay in complying, according to court documents released on Wednesday.

Trump Indictment Capitol Riot
Trump Indictment Capitol Riot Special counsel Jack Smith speaks to the media (J Scott Applewhite/AP)

The details were included in a decision from the federal appeals court in Washington rejecting Twitter’s claim that a lower court judge was wrong to hold the company in contempt and imposing the sanction.

The filing says Mr Smith obtained a search warrant directing Twitter to produce “data and records” related to Mr Trump’s twitter account.

The government also got a nondisclosure agreement prohibiting Twitter from disclosing the search warrant. The filing says the court “found probable cause to search the Twitter account for evidence of criminal offences”.

Mr Smith has charged Mr Trump, in an indictment unsealed last week, with conspiring to subvert the will of voters and cling to power after he lost the 2020 election to Democrat Joe Biden.

Mr Trump, a Republican, has pleaded not guilty to charges including conspiracy to defraud the United States and obstruction of Congress’ certification of Mr Biden’s win.

Mr Trump says he is innocent and has portrayed the investigation as political motivated. His legal team has indicated it will argue that Mr Trump was relying on the advice of lawyers around him in 2020 and had the right to challenge an election he believed was rigged.

Mr Trump’s campaign did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

A spokesman for the special counsel’s office declined to comment on the warrant or what exactly it sought. Messages seeking comment from X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, were not immediately returned.