(CNN) — Brian Butler, a former Mar-a-Lago worker referenced as “Trump Employee Number 5” in the classified documents indictment of Donald Trump, spoke exclusively with CNN on Monday about what he saw at the former president’s private club and the subsequent fallout after a search there by federal investigators.

Butler’s interview with CNN’s Kaitlan Collins provides new details on how he unwittingly helped move classified documents onto Trump’s private plane – and on the pressure campaign that followed as he and others were offered Trump-aligned lawyers.

Butler said he was helping to move the boxes to the airport at the same time Trump was greeting federal investigators at his property in June 2022, two months before the FBI’s search of Mar-a-Lago and a year before Trump was indicted by special counsel Jack Smith over his alleged mishandling of classified documents.

Butler told CNN that he hasn’t spoken to his onetime best friend – Carlos De Oliveira, who is one of Trump’s co-defendants – since the indictment, and he explained why he does not think Trump, his boss of 20 years, should be elected president again.

Here are the takeaways from CNN’s interview with Butler:

The boxes were going out as the FBI was coming in

Butler described how in June 2022 he helped Walt Nauta, Trump’s body man and another co-defendant in the case, move boxes from Mar-a-Lago to the airport as Trump prepared to depart for his resort in New Jersey for the summer.

That was happening at the same time, Butler says, that federal investigators were visiting Trump to discuss returning the classified material in the former president’s possession.

“I come to realize now at the same time he’s going in there, the boxes are going from somewhere into a vehicle, which are eventually going to the plane, which I load with Walt,” Butler said, noting that he had no idea at the time what was in the boxes.

Butler says he saw Trump as he was going in to meet his attorney, Evan Corcoran, and a group of people he would later realize were FBI agents.

“I was on the cloister outside over by the bar, and the former president was walking towards the living room, like he was gonna enter the living room,” Butler said. “He was with Secret Service. I remember he said hi to me. ‘Hi, Brian.’ ‘Hi Mr. Trump,’ or ‘President Trump.’ And then he went in and talked to them, but I had no clue who those people were.”

‘We’re all dirty. We all moved boxes.’

De Oliveira was added as a co-defendant in the classified documents case in July 2023 when he was charged with trying to cover up efforts to move the boxes at Trump’s resort.

Prosecutors allege in an updated indictment that Nauta and De Oliveira attempted to delete security camera footage at the former president’s resort after the Justice Department issued a subpoena for it.

Butler’s interview offered new insight into De Oliveira’s mindset when he spoke to investigators before he was indicted. Prosecutors allege that De Oliveira lied to the FBI about whether he knew of the boxes of documents at Mar-a-Lago.

Butler recalled a conversation where De Oliveira tried to include him among those who were moving the boxes with classified documents, even though Butler says he didn’t have any clue what the boxes that he helped take to the airport held.

“There was one time, he said, ‘You know, we’re all dirty. We all moved boxes.’ And I said, ‘Well, look, I didn’t even know what I was moving until I was at the plane, and that’s when I remember moving boxes.’”

“I think he just wanted to – I don’t know, you know?” Butler continued. “Maybe he thought if it was Walt, him, and I all together, maybe things would be better if we all … I don’t know.”

Butler was asked about De Oliveira’s loyalty

Butler recalled a night in August 2022 when he was out with De Oliveira for his 40th birthday at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Florida. He received a call from Nauta, he said, with a question about his friend’s loyalty to Trump. He told Nauta he had no doubt that De Olievira would be loyal.

Nauta then asked Butler to confirm that in an encrypted text message over Signal with Susie Wiles, a Trump aide who is now running his 2024 campaign.

“I get to the Hard Rock, or right around the same timeframe, and Walt says – they add me to a Signal chat group with Susie Wiles, and he says something to the effect like, ‘Brian, just – can you put in this chat what you just told me?’” Butler said.

“So I type it up. I say, ‘Hey, you know, little weird to me, but listen, Carlos is very loyal. He would not do anything to affect his relationship with the boss. He loves what he does, you know. And you don’t have to worry about Carlos,’” Butler continued.

Less than 30 minutes later, Butler recalled, De Oliveira received a call from Trump, who told him he would get an attorney.

Asked if it he thought it was unusual, Butler said, “Oh absolutely. But, you know, I obliged. Carlos is one of my best friends. I don’t wanna see him get hurt, or I want them to know that they can trust him.”

Wiles declined to comment.

Carlos pressured Butler to get a Trump-aligned attorney

Butler described how he received implicit pressure from De Oliveira to hire a Trump-aligned attorney instead of an independent attorney – a refrain that’s similar to other former Trump aides, like former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson.

Butler, instead, had already been in touch with a lawyer he knew separately before the FBI reached out to him. And he was prepared to hire that attorney instead of one paid for by Trump’s political action committee, like De Oliveira.

“You know, I had specifically told Carlos not to reach out to anybody on my behalf,” Butler said. “Under the circumstances, I guess I could see why he’d think I would need an attorney.”

Butler recalled that he received a voicemail from a Trump-aligned attorney, but by that point he already had hired his own.

“I think it’s better to look after yourself and take care of it yourself,” he said. “You know, even the voicemail by the attorney that called me, you know, he says, “I’m representing former President Trump.’ Well, that does me no good. You’re representing him, not me. I mean, I wouldn’t even consider that.”

But De Oliveira continued to raise the subject, Butler said.

“I think there was a lot of pressure there, I feel,” Butler said. “It got brought up multiple times. You know, he mentioned to me, ‘Why didn’t you call him back? It’s gonna cost you a lot of money. I mean, you should see my attorney bills that I get. It’s thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars.’ I said, ‘I’m okay. I’m good.’”

De Oliveira offered Butler, who had left his job at Mar-a-Lago in late 2022, potential face time with Trump for a golf tournament.

Butler recalled De Olievra telling him: “‘Oh, let me get you tickets,’ or, ‘I’m sure the boss would love to see you.’”

‘This is not a witch hunt’

While he worked for Trump for two decades, Butler said he would now view him “unfavorably” and did not think he should be running for president again.

“I personally would just say I just don’t believe that he should be a presidential candidate at this time. I think it’s time to move on,” he said.

Butler explained that he chose to speak about what he saw at Mar-a-Lago because he thinks voters should know what happened before the election, and that Trump’s claims he did nothing wrong were “all bogus.”

“I think the American people have the right to know the facts, that this is not a witch hunt,” Butler said.

“I don’t want to live in fear. I mean, we’re only here for a finite time. To me, I refuse to live in fear like that. I mean, yes, cautious. But, you know, I’m gonna tell the truth,” he added. “I mean, this is so much bigger than me. It’s bigger than Carlos. You know, this is a nation that needs to decide who’s gonna be the next president.”

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