DOJ seizes phone of former Trump attorney John Eastman as part of election probe, says lawsuit

Eastman had drafted a plan for Trump to cling to power by using false electors.

June 27, 2022, 9:21 PM

Authorities on Wednesday seized the cell phone of John Eastman, the former attorney for Donald Trump at the center of the House committee's investigation into the Jan. 6 Capitol attack, as part of the Justice Department's criminal probe into efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election, according to a lawsuit filed by Eastman's attorney.

In the lawsuit, Eastman's attorney claims that the agents served the warrant on him last Wednesday evening while he was exiting a restaurant. They claim Eastman was frisked and his iPhone was seized, and that the agents made him provide biometric data to unlock his phone.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in New Mexico, seeks to have the phone returned to Eastman.

Eastman, a right-wing lawyer, drafted a plan for then-President Trump to cling to power by falsely claiming that then-Vice President Mike Pence could reject legitimate electors during the certification of the election on Jan. 6.

Eastman's lawsuit claims that the warrant for his phone's seizure was issued at "the behest of the Department of Justice’s Office of the Inspector General," which has publicly said it is investigating any efforts by DOJ personnel to interfere in the 2020 election results.

Neither representatives for Eastman nor the U.S. Attorney's Office in Washington, D.C., immediately returned ABC News' request for comment.

John Eastman, the University of Colorado Boulders visiting scholar of conservative thought and policy, speaks about his plans to sue the university at a news conference outside of CU Boulder, April 29, 2021.
MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images

As ABC News first reported last week, federal agents on Wednesday also conducted a search of the Virginia home of Jeffrey Clark, the former DOJ official who also allegedly sought to aid Trump's efforts to overturn the election.

Related Topics