WASHINGTON — The special master reviewing materials seized by the F.B.I. from former President Donald J. Trump’s compound in Florida expressed skepticism on Tuesday about early claims by Mr. Trump’s lawyers that certain documents were privileged and thus could be withheld from a Justice Department investigation.
In a phone conference, the special master, Judge Raymond J. Dearie of Federal District Court in Brooklyn, complained that the log of an initial batch of documents over which Mr. Trump is seeking to claim privilege lacked sufficient information to determine whether the arguments were valid.
Judge Dearie encouraged Mr. Trump’s lawyers to give him a better sense of why they believed the documents could be lawfully shielded from the Justice Department’s inquiry into whether Mr. Trump unlawfully kept classified records at his estate and obstructed the government’s repeated efforts to retrieve them.
“It’s a little perplexing as I go through the log,” Judge Dearie said. “What’s the expression — ‘Where’s the beef?’ I need some beef.”