Mar-a-Lago property manager Carlos De Oliveira pleads not guilty to new charges in documents probe

Prosecutors say he attempted to delete surveillance footage at the estate.

August 15, 2023, 11:34 AM

Carlos De Oliveira, the property manager at former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate who is facing his first charges in special counsel Jack Smith's classified documents probe, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to the charges brought by Smith in a superseding indictment last month.

De Oliveira appeared in court in Fort Pierce, Florida, with his local counsel, Donnie Murrell. A local prosecutor for the special counsel's office, Michael Thakur, appeared for Smith's office.

This was the third time De Oliveira appeared in court to be arraigned, after he previously hadn't yet finalized arrangements for local counsel.

Trump pleaded not guilty in June to 37 criminal counts related to his handling of classified materials, after prosecutors said he repeatedly refused to return hundreds of documents containing classified information ranging from U.S. nuclear secrets to the nation's defense capabilities, and took steps to thwart the government's efforts to get the documents back. Trump's longtime aide, Walt Nauta, also pleaded not guilty to related charges.

Trump, Nauta, and De Oliveira are all facing new charges in the superseding indictment, including that they conspired to obstruct justice by attempting to delete Mar-a-Lago surveillance footage that prosecutors say showed employees moving boxes around, in order "to conceal information from the FBI and grand jury," according to the indictment.

Trump and Nauta both pleaded not guilty to the new charges last week.

De Oliveira is charged with four criminal counts, including making false statements, conspiring to obstruct justice, and altering, destroying, mutilating or concealing an object from an official proceeding.

Carlos De Oliveira, the property manager of Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate, leaves the Alto Lee Adams Sr. U.S. Courthouse, Aug. 10, 2023, in Fort Pierce, Fla.
Wilfredo Lee/AP, FILE

Prosecutors allege that the three men engaged in a plot to destroy potential evidence, set in motion after the Trump Organization received a draft grand jury subpoena in June 2022 requesting Mar-a-Lago security footage.

Trump allegedly communicated with Nauta and De Oliveira, including a 24-minute phone call with De Oliveira, the day following the receipt of the subpoena, according to the indictment.

Trump has denied all charges and denounced the probe as a political witch hunt.

Related Topics