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Judge proposed by Trump named to vet records seized by FBI

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Trump suggestion named Special MasterA senior federal judge with experience handling U.S. national security matters was named on Thursday as an independent arbiter to vet records seized by the FBI from former President Donald Trump's Florida estate in an ongoing criminal investigation.

Senior U.S. District Judge Raymond Dearie, based in Brooklyn, was appointed by Florida-based U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon to serve in a role called a special master in the case. Dearie, 78, is tasked with deciding whether any of the documents are privileged - either due to attorney-client confidentiality or through a legal principle called executive privilege - and should be off limits to federal investigators.

Cannon on Sept. 5 granted a request by Trump's lawyers to name a special master to vet the seized records, and Dearie was one of two candidates for the post that the former president proposed.

Trump is under investigation by the Justice Department for retaining government records - some of which were marked as highly classified including "top secret" - at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach after leaving office in January 2021. FBI agents seized more than 11,000 records including roughly 100 marked as classified.

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