Federal agents seized the personal phone of John Eastman, one of the alleged organizers of President Donald Trump’s campaign to discredit the 2020 election, according to a new report.
FBI agents were executing a search warrant to pick up Eastman’s phone as he left a New Mexico restaurant last Wednesday, the New York Times reported, citing a court document Eastman filed Monday.
The phone was turned over to the Department of Justice’s inspector general’s office and transported to the department’s forensic lab in Northern Virginia, according to Eastman’s filing, a request for reclaiming his property from the government.
Investigators allege that Eastman, a conservative law professor who served as Trump’s advisor during his presidency, was the “architect” of Trump’s campaign of voter fraud allegations and an attempt to overturn the January 6, 2021 election result.
Examination of Eastman’s phone shows the Justice Department is escalating its criminal investigation into Trump’s efforts to hold on to the presidency.
Ahead of the investigation, in a phone call the day after the Jan. 6 riot, a White House attorney warned Eastman not to hire a “big damn” defense attorney.
“[Eastman] started asking me about something Georgia related and preserving something that could potentially appeal and I said to him, ‘Are you crazy?
“I said, ‘I just want to hear two words out of your mouth from now on: orderly transition.’ I said, “I don’t want to hear any other damn words out of your mouth no matter what, other than an orderly transition,” he continued in a recorded message.
“Finally he said ‘orderly transition.’ I said, “Good John. Now I’m going to give you the best free legal advice you’ve ever had in your life: Get a damn good criminal lawyer, you’re going to need one.’ And then I hung up.”
Investigators have previously asked a judge to force Eastman to declassify his email messages related to the conspiracy. They said Trump invoked his advice when he goaded supporters to halt the Jan. 6 Capitol certification of his election loss.
Eastman is said to have slandered then-Vice President Mike Pence for upholding the law that afternoon — even as he realized an armed mob had breached the Capitol and threatened violence against Pence.
Federal agents have also seized the phone of former Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark, another central figure in Trump’s disinformation campaign.
https://nypost.com/2022/06/27/federal-agents-seize-phone-of-ex-trump-adviser-john-eastman/ Federal agents seize ex-Trump adviser John Eastman’s phone