Pence won’t be charged in investigating labeled DOJ paperwork

Former US Vice President Mike Pence speaks during the Nixon National Energy Conference at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library & Museum in Yorba Linda, California on Wednesday, April 19, 2023.

Eric Thayer | Bloomberg | Getty Images

No charges have been filed against former Vice President Mike Pence as part of the US Department of Justice investigation into classified documents found at his Indiana home.

The Department of Justice’s National Security Division wrote to Pence’s attorney, saying it was completing its investigation and would not pursue charges based on the “findings” of its investigation, NBC News reported Friday morning.

A Justice Department official, who asked to remain anonymous to discuss the matter, confirmed to CNBC the authenticity of the letter, which was sent Thursday. Another source familiar with the matter, who also requested anonymity to discuss the investigation, confirmed Pence would not be charged. Pence’s attorney did not immediately respond to CNBC’s requests for comment.

The outcome of the probe comes less than a week before Pence is reported to announce he is running for president. The Republican primary campaign will put Pence in competition with his former boss, former President Donald Trump, who is embroiled in a much larger probe into classified documents found in his resort town of Mar-a- Lago were preserved.

In January, Pence’s attorney said a “small number” of confidential documents were found at his home in Carmel, Indiana. The attorney said Pence was unaware the documents were there and that after discovering classified documents in President Joe Biden’s private home, he hired an outside attorney to search his home for such materials “out of the utmost caution.”

Less than a month later, the FBI conducted a five-hour search of Pence’s home and found another classified document.

Trump, meanwhile, faces a criminal investigation into the hundreds of classified documents removed from Mar-a-Lago since he left the White House. An FBI search of the Palm Beach, Fla., resort last August turned up more than 100 other classified documents and a host of other materials seized by federal agents.

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A special counsel from the US Department of Justice is leading the investigation into these documents and the possible obstruction of the investigation. Trump has denied wrongdoing and publicly claimed he released the records of his property. News outlets reported this week that the special counsel received a 2021 audiotape in which Trump confirmed that a document he kept after his presidency was kept secret.

In a social media post on Friday, Trump said it was “great” that the Justice Department was not filing charges against Pence, but wondered when he too would be “fully exonerated.”

“I’m at least as innocent as he is,” Trump wrote of Pence.

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