For years, attorneys for former President Donald Trump have come and gone.
Some, like Michael Cohen, took a plea deal — trading three years behind bars for a new career as a minor anti-Trump media figure. Rudy Giuliani endured, forced to fend off an SDNY criminal probe, multiple defamation suits, and the annihilation of whatever dignity he had remaining.
Others, like Mueller-era attorneys Ty Cobb and John Dowd, reportedly quit representing Trump after he repeatedly ignored their advice. And yet more untold attorneys served the former President, only to never be paid, as former Attorney General Bill Barr recently remarked.
And now, with prosecutors bearing down on the former President over his stashing of classified and other government records at Mar-a-Lago, he has a new legal team, some of whom appear to have landed themselves in the DOJ’s crosshairs.
It’s Christina Bobb, the former OAN host, and Evan Corcoran, an attorney for Steve Bannon who joined the Trump team in April.
Bobb departed OAN in March, leaving the MAGA conspiracy network for the not-so-distinct world of Trump’s legal team. And it wasn’t her first rodeo with Trumpworld and law: according to Giuliani, Bobb moonlighted as an attorney throughout the 2020 election for Trump’s efforts to overturn the result, while working as a reporter for OAN at the same time.
FEC records show Bobb on the payroll for Trump’s PAC in June.
But to the DOJ, Bobb isn’t just a former OAN host, or really only a Trump attorney.
Per previous reports and a late-night court filing released by prosecutors on Tuesday, Bobb is Trump’s official “custodian of records” — the person who signed off on a critical statement saying that there were no more documents marked classified at Mar-a-Lago, which turned out to be false.
Through a bizarre series of entirely avoidable but very MAGA blunders, that may land Bobb in real hot water.
Prosecutors attached a May 11 letter from DOJ Counterintelligence Chief Jay Bratt to Corcoran, outlining the terms on which Trump’s lawyers could respond to a grand jury subpoena issued for remaining records labeled classified held at Mar-a-Lago.
In the letter, Bratt wrote that “the custodian would also provide a sworn certification that the documents represent all responsive records.”
That custodian, per public reporting, was Bobb.
When DOJ officials, including Bratt, visited Mar-a-Lago on June 3, Bobb (who is not named in the filing) signed a sworn statement saying that attorneys conducted a “diligent search” for records marked classified at Mar-a-Lago, and that they were handing over what they found. That, per the DOJ, included a limited number of documents encompassing 17 records marked Top Secret, among others.
Prosecutors were precise in how they worded the grand jury subpoena: they sought records bearing classification markings, not classified records.
It’s not clear whether that distinction was lost on Bobb or not.
After the FBI’s August raid of Mar-a-Lago, she appeared to believe that her team had only been asked to produce classified records — not records marked classified.
“They also said that they were looking for classified documents, evidence of a crime as far as classified documents goes,” Bobb said after the searches. “Classified information that they think should not have been removed from the White House as well as presidential records.”
“I don’t believe that there was any [classified information] down there,” she added. “We had done a search of it before and didn’t find anything noteworthy.”
The DOJ did not appear amused by the situation in its court filings.
“That the FBI, in a matter of hours, recovered twice as many documents with classification markings as the ‘diligent search’ that the former President’s counsel and other representatives had weeks to perform calls into serious question the representations made in the June 3 certification and casts doubt on the extent of cooperation in this matter,” the filing reads.
For Bobb, it’s not clear that she necessarily lied in her June 3 statement.
Per the filings, Bobb may have been relying on Corcoran to conduct the search, and per the FBI, classified-marked records appear to have been strewn across Mar-a-Lago, including within Trump’s desk.
What’s not clear as well is what role the attorneys may or may not have had in the obstruction allegations that form part of the government’s investigation.
“The government also developed evidence that government records were likely concealed and removed from the Storage Room and that efforts were likely taken to obstruct the government’s investigation,” the filing reads.
It’s not clear who moved the records in question.