Trump, Mar-a-Lago search: Whatever the FBI found, they were sure to encounter security and opulence

Former President Donald Trump dropped a bombshell Monday night when he announced that the FBI had executed a search warrant in Mar-a-Lago, though he gave no details of the FBI's intent.
Under the law, any search would have to be authorized by a federal judge after finding a probable cause that a crime was committed and there is evidence of the crime at the location being searched.
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Trump and Mar-a-Lago: How big is it, is it open to the public and security breaches?
It's safe to say that all of the agents Monday at the Mar-a-Lago Club -- where Trump has his primary residence -- have settled into one of the safest spots in Palm Beach.
Here's why.
Mar-a-Lago is built like a fortress
The structure is anchored deep in the coral rock below and has 3 foot thick walls in some places. The manor house was built in the 1920s by grain heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post, who at the time was married to stockbroker E.F. Hutton. Since then, the building has weathered hurricanes and severe storms but never suffered major structural damage.
Former President Donald Trump meets for the Chapters Daughters of the American Revolution Henry Morrison Flagler luncheon April 6 at The Mar-a-Lago Club.
Secret service agents remain on site
During the Trump administration, Secret Service and other security details dealt with several challenges presented by the historic property. As a former president, Trump continues to receive Secret Service protection services, albeit on a reduced scale.
Walled on three sides, the 17.5-acre lot has a relatively exposed location right next to the Southern Boulevard Bridge, with two sides facing the street. The property also features a 600-foot causeway wall that sits on an easily accessible section of the Intracoastal Waterway, as well as an oceanfront section that services its Beach Club. A tunnel under South Ocean Boulevard connects most of the property to the beach.
The main body of the club is closed during the summer, although the private beach club on the east side of South Ocean Boulevard has retained partial summer hours for members and their guests.
The street was closed to through traffic during Trump's presidency
During Trump's stints in Mar-a-Lago as president, the stretch of coast road in front of the club was closed to through traffic, with tight checkpoints set up to screen drivers and passengers who either lived in the adjacent neighborhood or attended events in the club. The lane is no longer closed today when Trump resides in the club.
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The exact details of other security measures taken during Trump's presidency have been kept top secret, although boats have regularly patrolled the Intracoastal Waterway and beach.
All FBI agents who entered the club on Monday no doubt found themselves in ornately decorated rooms thanks to the restoration carried out by Trump after he bought the mansion -- with more than 100 rooms -- in 1985, with more Works were carried out before his club opened a decade later.
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If the agents had entered through the main entrance of the Porte-Cochere, they would have passed through an arch with a wrought-iron grilled glass door into the entrance hall with its antique Havermeyer tiles, Spanish lanterns and coat of arms. Then it was on to the living room with its stately fireplace and soaring gilded ceiling, an adaptation of the "Ceiling of a Thousand Wings" found in the Venice Accademia. The nearby dining room is modeled after the original 16th-century Palazzo Chigi in Rome.
The Trump family calls the club home
The public spaces and grounds are the showpieces of Mar-a-Lago, but the property is also home to the private quarters where the Trump family spends time during their stays. These areas are off-limits to the vast majority of Mar-a-Lago visitors — but probably not to FBI agents armed with a search warrant.
Darrell Hofheinz is a journalist with the Palm Beach Daily News, part of the USA TODAY Florida Network. You can reach him at dhofheinz@pbdailynews.com. Support our journalism. Subscribe today.
This article originally appeared in the Palm Beach Daily News: Trump, FBI Raid: Mar-a-Lago, One of the Safest Places in Palm Beach
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45th President of the United States

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