- The action could force the Indian American to testify on claims that the documents found at the former president’s Florida estate were declassified.
The Department of Justice has reportedly granted immunity to Trump adviser Kash Patel to secure testimony in the Mar-a-Lago documents case. The Wall Street Journal, quoting people familiar with the matter, said that Patel is set to testify before a Grand Jury after receiving immunity for his information. After invoking his 5th amendment right against self-incrimination during his previous sitting before the Grand Jury, Patel will now be compelled to testify truthfully at the risk of perjuring himself.
The action “could force Patel to testify on claims that secret government documents found on the former president’s Florida estate were declassified,” The Guardian reported. “The classification status of the documents is significant for the criminal probe about Trump’s mishandling of national security materials as it could bolster a possible prosecution that the former president had breached security law,” the report added.
In another setback for the political fixer, Google is reportedly blocking ads for a children’s book about the 2020 election by Patel. “Last week, Google barred ads for Patel’s “The Plot Against the King 2,000 Mules,” insisting in a notice to the publisher that the book was ineligible to advertise due to “unreliable claims”,” The Federalist reported.
Patel, a former Pentagon official and longtime House Intelligence Committee aide, is one of the staunchest critics of the FBI raid at Mar-a-Lago. He has been on right-wing television and other broadcast media making the case for his former boss’s right to hold on to the documents. While “these claims have not been backed up by evidence in the case,” The Guardian notes that it believed that “a possible immunity deal for Patel could lead to new insight on the status of the documents along with other key issues—including how the documents ended up at Mar-a-Lago.”
Citing “a person briefed on the matter,” The New York Times reported last month that Patel appeared before a grand jury “but repeatedly invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination when asked about the former president’s documents case.”
Patel’s emergence as a key figure in ‘TransferGate’ has made him a fixture in Trump’s post-presidential affairs. In an April 2021 profile in The Washington Post, columnist David Ignatius described Patel as an “almost a ‘Zelig’ figure in Trump’s campaign against the deep state.” He keeps “reappearing in different guises,” Ignatius said about Patel on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Aug. 23.
As Ignatius noted on MSNBC, in the last few months, “Patel has emerged as a key point of contact for Trump dealing with this question of classified documents being kept at Mar-a-Lago.” As early as May, “months before the subpoenas or reach warrants,” Ignatius noted how Patel was “publicly making claims that Trump had unilateral right to declassify material as president.”
On June 19, Patel, Trump designated Patel to be one of his official representatives to the National Archives. In an Aug. 11 podcast with conservative journalist John Solomon, Patel also disclosed that he had led an effort to obtain documents through the National Archives months before the FBI’s raid. He said he and Solomon both have “been on a mission” as “the president’s representatives to the National Archives” to prove Trump had declassified the documents seized by the FBI.
A look at Patel’s steady rise in the Trump administration shows how he came about from a mere staffer to becoming an insider. It is also increasingly evident that Trump’s dependence on Patel has increased since the Jan. 6 Capitol Hill insurrection, and his election lies, and now the transfer gate.
Currently, Patel is a director of Trump Media and Technology Group, which runs Truth Social, headed by Nunes, his former boss.