Yesterday, Trump and his closest allies, including his former counsel Rudy Giuliani, former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, and a former senior Justice Department official named Jeffrey Clark, were indicted on felony charges relating to efforts to manipulate the Georgia presidential election in 2020.
In addition to John Eastman, Sidney Powell, Kenneth Chesebro, Jenn Ellis, and Ray Smith, the broad 41-count indictment names a number of other attorneys. Against each individual, RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations) law violations were alleged.
According to court documents, Trump was charged with felony racketeering and multiple conspiracy offenses in an indictment presented to the magistrate at 9 p.m. ET and made public at 11 p.m.
A conviction for conspiracy carries a minimum sentence of one year in prison and a variable maximum sentence, while a conviction for extortion carries a sentence of five to twenty years in prison.
“Trump and the other defendants charged in this indictment refused to accept that Trump lost, and they knowingly and willfully joined a conspiracy to unlawfully change the outcome of the election in favor of Trump,” the indictment says.
Trump has refuted all malfeasance, just as Giuliani did before the indictment was made public. All of Eastman, Meadows, Chesebro, Ellis, and Smith’s immediate requests for comment went unanswered.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis stated at a late-night news conference that all of the defendants have arrest warrants and have until August 25 to turn themselves in voluntarily.
Willis indicated that all 19 defendants would be prosecuted simultaneously.
An indictment was returned Monday evening after a grand jury heard testimony in Willis’ investigation into whether Trump and his advisers interfered with the 2020 presidential election.
Trump has been charged twice in the past two weeks with attempting to influence the outcome of an election, making this his fourth indictment in the past 412 months.
Trump’s Jan. 2, 2021, phone call to Georgia’s senior election official, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, pleading with him to “find” the votes required for Trump to defeat Joe Biden and win the state was one among the episodes mentioned in the latest indictment.
Trump stated that the phone exchange was “perfect.”
The indictment also targets the so-called bogus electors, or those who falsely claimed to be Georgia’s legitimate electors and that Trump carried the state in 2020. According to court documents, Willis’ office reached immunity agreements with a number of fictitious voters in the last two months. The indictment alleges that there are at least 19 unindicted co-conspirators, including 13 who are believed to have participated in the fraudulent voter conspiracy.
The indictment infuriated Republican legislators, who claimed Trump’s right to due process had been violated. “Here we go again: another disastrous Trump indictment. It’s downright pathetic that Fulton County publicly posted the indictment on its website even before the grand jury had finished convening,” wrote presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy in an X post.
“Since the four prosecutions against Trump are using novel & untested legal theories, it’s fair game for him to do the same in defense: immediately file a motion to dismiss for a constitutional due process violation for publicly issuing an indictment before the grand jury had actually signed one,” he continued.
The grand jury procedure has also been scrutinized as a result of the media’s extensive coverage of the proceedings’ apparent haste. The prosecutor’s goal was to have the trial concluded by Tuesday morning, so jurors were urged to remain mute throughout the night.
“Fulton County DA appears determined to finish presenting evidence in the Trump case to the grand jury tonight, per multiple people familiar — meaning indictments could also come tonight,” wrote MSNBC reporter Hugo Lowell. “Inside the courthouse, people are currently having dinner.”
In addition to the two federal charges against him and the criminal complaints filed by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg and now Willis, the former president is already facing a prison term of over 600 years.