A member of President Trump's legal team alleged Thursday special counsel Robert Mueller's used a "gross abuse of the judicial process" for the sake of "shock value" by raiding former campaign manager Paul Manafort's Alexandria, Va., home last month.
Lawyer John Dowd exclaimed Mueller's task force resembles something seen "in Russia not America," according to an email he sent a Wall Street Journal reporter about the raid.
Dowd said the FBI's request for a search warrant was an "extraordinary invasion of privacy" because Manafort has voluntarily handed over documents and met with congressional committees about items related to the probe into possible collusion between Trump and Russia during last year's election.
"These failures by special counsel to exhaust less intrusive methods is a fatal flaw in the warrant process and would call for a motion to suppress the fruits of the search," Dowd wrote in an email obtained by FoxNews.com.
"Thus, it appears the search warrant here was obtained by a gross abuse of the judicial process by the special counsel's office. In addition, given the obvious unlawful deficiencies, this extraordinary invasive tool was employed for its shock value to try to intimidate Mr. Manafort and bring him to his needs (sic)," Dowd added. "These methods are normally found and employed in Russia not America."
Federal agents left Manafort's home on July 26 with a number of records connected to the special counsel's wide-ranging investigation.
The raid came one day after Manafort voluntarily sat down with the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Manafort had previously provided documents to the Senate Judiciary Committee, as well as the House and Senate Intelligence Committees, including notes he took about a June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower with Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner and a group of Russian citizens.
Federal officials may have obtained the search warrant by arguing Manafort — a former lobbyist for Ukrainian, Philippine, and other world leaders — was not expected to turn over all relevant information for the grand jury subpoena.
Mueller is becoming a central focus in Mueller's investigation. The special counsel is looking at the former GOP political consultant's private business and personal life.