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Federal judge declines to hold former President Trump in contempt of court in classified material battle

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A federal judge has declined to take action to hold former President Trump in contempt of court during a closed-door hearing on Friday, according to two sources with knowledge of the proceedings.

Friday’s hearing was in relation to a federal probe into Trump’s handling of classified material at his Florida estate, Mar-a-Lago.

Judge Beryl Howell urged lawyers from the Department of Justice and Trump’s team to work out the matter on their own during a 90-minute meeting in a Washington, D.C., federal court.

The Justice Department has become increasingly frustrated with lawyers for Trump over the past few months for allegedly failing to comply with a subpoena asking for classified documents in Trump’s possession to be returned, sources tell Fox News.

FORMER PRESIDENT TRUMP’S OFFICE COULD BE HELD IN CONTEMPT OF COURT OVER MAR-A-LAGO DOCUMENTS PROBE: REPORTS

Former President Donald Trump announces he is running for president for the third time at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Fla., Nov. 15, 2022.

Former President Donald Trump announces he is running for president for the third time at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Fla., Nov. 15, 2022.
(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)

A public order or statement wasn’t issued following the meeting.

The Department of Justice refused to comment.

TRUMP INQUIRY: COURT LIFTS JUDGE’S HOLD BLOCKING DOJ FROM USING CLASSIFIED DOCUMENTS FOUND AT MAR-A-LAGO

The U.S. Department of Justice is seen on June 11, 2021, in Washington, DC. 

The U.S. Department of Justice is seen on June 11, 2021, in Washington, DC. 
(Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate was the subject of a search warrant executed in August by Federal Bureau of Investigation agents, where classified documents were allegedly found to have been in his possession.

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Former President Donald Trump speaks at Mar-a-lago on Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, in Palm Beach, Fla. 

Former President Donald Trump speaks at Mar-a-lago on Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, in Palm Beach, Fla. 
(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Steven Cheung, senior communications adviser to Trump, told Fox News Digital that the former president and his lawyers will continue to cooperate.

“The President and his counsel will continue to be transparent and cooperative, even in the face of the highly weaponized and corrupt witch-hunt from the Department of Justice. Hillary Clinton was allowed to delete and acid wash 33,000 emails after they were subpoenaed by Congress, yet absolutely nothing has happened to hold her accountable. If the Department of Justice can go after President Trump, they will surely come after any American who they disagree with. President Trump is the only one who stands in the way of the un-American weaponization of law enforcement,” Cheung said.

Fox News’ Greg Wehner contributed to this report.