(DCWatchdog.com) – The US Justice Department has decided not to press charges against former Vice President Mike Pence over the classified documents discovered in his possession.
About a dozen US government documents with classified markings were discovered in two boxes at Pence’s home outside Indianapolis on January 16.
One of Pence’s lawyers made the discovery and alerted the National Archives agency. The FBI seized the boxes three days later.
After that, on February 10, the FBI carried out a five-hour sweep of the former vice president’s house in Carmel, Indiana, finding one more document.
“The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department’s National Security Division have conducted an investigation into the potential mishandling of classified information. Based on the results of that investigation, no criminal charges will be sought,” the DOJ said in a letter to Pence’s lawyer, as cited by CNN and The Daily Caller.
The Justice Department letter comes days before Mike Pence announces his official 2024 presidential candidacy. He will enter the race for the GOP presidential nomination with a speech in Iowa on June 7.
The documents at Pence’s home were found after classified records at former President Donald Trump’s Florida home in an FBI raid last August and properties owned or used by President Joe Biden.
DOJ special counsels are investigating Trump and Biden’s possession of classified papers.
An adviser to Pence commented on the Justice Department’s decision by stating the former Vice President’s team was “pleased but not surprised at the outcome.”
Reacting to the news that his former subordinate would not be charged for keeping classified government documents, former president Donald Trump stated that he was “at least as innocent as he [Pence] is.”
“That’s great, but when am I going to be fully exonerated, I’m at least as innocent as he is,” Trump wrote on Truth Social.
“And what about Joe Biden, who is hiding at least 1850 boxes, and some located in Chinatown, DC? When will the witch hunt against ‘TRUMP’ stop?” the former president wondered.
Last week, Trump’s legal team asked Attorney General Merrick Garland to “discuss the ongoing injustice that is being perpetrated by your Special Counsel and his prosecutors.”