Washington: Additional classified documents have been found from the residence of US President Joe Biden and his private office, the White House said Thursday.
These documents, as recovered from his private office in Washington DC, are from the time when he was the Vice President from 2009 to 2016.
Following the discovery of government documents at the Penn Biden Center in November 2022, and coordinating closely with the Department of Justice, the President’s lawyers have searched the President’s Wilmington and Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, residences – the other locations where files from his Vice-Presidential office might have been shipped in the course of the 2017 transition, Richard Sauber, Special Counsel to the President, said in a statement.
The lawyers completed that review last night, Sauber said.
“During the review, the lawyers discovered among personal and political papers a small number of additional Obama-Biden Administration records with classified markings,” he said.
“All but one of these documents were found in storage space in the President’s Wilmington residence garage. One document consisting of one page was discovered among stored materials in an adjacent room. No documents were found in the Rehoboth Beach residence,” Sauber said.
As was done in the case of the Penn-Biden Center, the Department of Justice was immediately notified, and the lawyers arranged for the Department of Justice to take possession of these documents, he said.
The Department of Justice has said that Attorney General Merrick B Garland is to make a statement later Thursday.
Early this week, President Biden told reporters in Mexico that he was surprised to learn that some classified documents were found at a private office he once used at a Washington think tank, asserting that he is unaware of what is in those papers and is “cooperating fully” with their review.
Biden periodically used the office space from mid-2017, after his term as vice president for then-President Barack Obama ended, until the start of his 2020 presidential campaign.
“People know I take classified documents or classified information seriously. When my lawyers were clearing out my office at the University of Pennsylvania, they set up an office for me, a secure office in the Capitol. The four years after being the Vice President, I was a professor at Penn,” Biden told reporters in Mexico City.
The White House had said earlier the Department of Justice was reviewing “a small number of documents with classified markings” from the previous Obama-Biden administration found at Biden’s think-tank office here.
“They found some documents in a box, in a locked cabinet, or at least the closet. And as soon as they did, they realised there were several classified documents in that box, and they did what they should have done. They immediately called the archives, turned them over to the archives,” Biden said in his first response to the discovery of documents.
“I was briefed about this discovery and surprised to learn that there were any government records that were taken there to that office, but I don’t know what’s in the documents either,” he said.
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