The go-ahead for the unprecedented FBI raid on former President Donald Trump's Florida residence was signed off on by a judge who, as an attorney, had represented associates of Jeffrey Epstein who were alleged to have assisted the wealthy pedophile in the trafficking of underage girls.
Judge Bruce E. Reinhart, a U.S. Magistrate Judge for the Southern District of Florida, signed off on the warrant to raid Trump's home at Mar-a-Lago on Monday night.
Reports note that Reinhart had previously left his position as U.S. Attorney to represent clients in Epstein's orbit.
According to the Miami Herald, Reinhart was hired on Jan. 2, 2008, to represent accomplices of Epstein who would later go on to receive federal immunity for allegedly trafficking underage girls.
Reinhart admitted to the Miami Herald that he had represented Epstein’s pilots; his scheduler, Sarah Kellen; and Nadia Marcinkova, who Epstein once reportedly described as his “Yugoslavian sex slave.”
Kellen and Marcinkova were among Epstein’s lieutenants who were granted immunity as part of a controversial 2007 deal with federal prosecutors that allowed Epstein to plead guilty to state charges rather than federal crimes. Epstein wound up serving just 13 months in county jail and was granted work release.
Ten months after starting work for Epstein’s co-conspirators, according to Federal Election Commission records, Reinhart gave $1,000 directly to the Obama campaign and another $1,000 to its fundraising arm, the Obama Victory Fund. Though the records show the judge made mostly small-dollar donations to his law firm’s political action committee in subsequent years, Reinhart also donated $500 to Jeb Bush’s 2016 presidential campaign in November 2015.
Reinhart was later named in a civil lawsuit by two of Epstein’s victims who accused Reinhart of violating Department of Justice policies by switching sides in the middle of the Epstein investigation, suggesting he had spilled inside information about the probe to build favor with Epstein, the Herald reported in 2018.
In a 2011 sworn affidavit submitted as part of a civil case, Reinhart denied that he did any actions considered unethical and improper, and assured that he was not part of the team involved in Epstein’s investigation during his time as an assistant U.S. attorney, therefore claiming that he did not revise any confidential information regarding the case.
Two years later, however, Reinhard’s former supervisors at the U.S. Attorney’s Office filed a court paper that stated, "while Bruce E. Reinhart was an assistant U.S. attorney, he learned confidential, non-public information about the Epstein matter."
Sealed search warrant here signed by Bruce E Reinhart, magistrate judge for the Southern District of Florida https://t.co/Vl1FkjjMt8— Miranda Devine (@mirandadevine) August 9, 2022