A source confirms to CBS News that an employee at former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort seen on security camera footage moving boxes that have become a key part of the FBI’s ongoing investigation into Trump’s handling of presidential records is a former White House culinary worker and Navy veteran.
According to an individual familiar with the investigation, Walt Nauta, who worked as a White House culinary employee from 2012 to 2021, told investigators that the former president directed him to move the boxes to a different location while the federal investigation was underway.
Nauta, a native of Guam, is now a witness in the Justice Department’s investigation, which grew after a search warrant was executed on Trump’s Florida home in August, and has appeared before a federal grand jury in Washington, D.C., CBS News has learned.
According to the source, investigators are interested in Nauta’s firsthand knowledge of what he told investigators was Trump’s directive to move the record containers.
Nauta was a culinary specialist who enlisted in the Navy in July 2001, worked on aircraft carriers and naval bases, and received a number of medals and honors during his career.
His service record indicates that his final post before leaving the military in September 2021 was in Washington, D.C.
According to a source familiar with the investigation, the video of the boxes being handled is now in the hands of investigators, and it played a role in the FBI’s decision to execute the court-authorized search warrant at Mar-a-Lago in August.
Nauta’s attorney, Stanley Woodward, declined to comment for this report.