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Navy veteran charged alongside Trump in classified documents case

A gavel rests on a judge bench. (The Columbus Dispatch/TNS)
June 14, 2023

A Navy veteran and White House military valet to former President Donald Trump was indicted alongside Trump in the classified documents case.

Walt Nauta, a Navy veteran from Guam, enlisted in 2001 and eventually rose to the rank of senior chief culinary specialist, according to the BBC. While serving in the White House cafeteria, Trump moved Nauta to a military aide position. When Trump’s first term as president ended, Nauta retired from the Navy to continue serving the former president at Mar-a-Lago.

President Joe Biden’s Department of Justice accused Nauta of moving boxes from the White House for Trump and then lying to investigators about his activities. Nauta appeared in federal court with Trump on Tuesday, but he will not be arraigned until June 27.

READ MORE: Trump indicted on 37 charges, unsealed indictment reveals

Federal prosecutors alleged Nauta moved boxes of documents for Trump before lying to investigators about where the boxes were stored. When agents asked Nauta about the location of the materials, Nauta said, “I wish, I wish I could tell you. I don’t know. I don’t — I honestly just don’t know.”

The Navy veteran is facing six federal charges, including conspiracy to obstruct justice, corruptly concealing a document or record and making false statements.

When the indictment was unsealed earlier this week, Trump slammed the Justice Department for targeting Nauta, whom he described as “a wonderful man.”

“I have just learned that the ‘Thugs’ from the Department of Injustice will be Indicting a wonderful man, Walt Nauta, a member of the U.S. Navy, who served proudly with me in the White House, retired as Senior Chief, and then transitioned into private life as a personal aide,” Trump wrote on his social media platform Truth Social. “He has done a fantastic job! They are trying to destroy his life, like the lives of so many others, hoping that he will say bad things about “Trump.” He is strong, brave, and a Great Patriot. The FBI and DOJ are CORRUPT!”