A grand jury in Fulton County, Georgia, has indicted former President Donald Trump and 18 of his associates for election fraud, racketeering and other charges related to alleged efforts to overturn the 2020 election.
The indictment names Trump and 18 others, including Rudy Giuliani, his former lawyer; John Eastman, a conservative lawyer; and Mark Meadows, former White House chief of staff. Other co-defendants include Jeffrey Clark, a former Justice Department official; and Sidney Powell and Jenna Ellis, conservative lawyers who pushed baseless claims of voter fraud. The filing lists 41 total counts, including 13 against Trump, and notes there are 30 unindicted co-conspirators. In all, 19 defendants are charged with “the offense of violation of the Georgia RICO Act,” among other charges.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis said that arrest warrants have been issued for all the defendants in the case, and that they have until noon on Aug. 25 to turn themselves in: “The state’s role in this process is essential to the functioning of our democracy. Georgia, like every state, has laws that allow those who believe that results of the election are wrong, whether because of intentional wrongdoing, or unintentional error to challenge those results in state courts,” she said. But rather than abiding by Georgia’s legal process for election challenges, she said, the defendants “engaged in a criminal racketeering enterprise to overturn Georgia’s presidential election result subsequent to the indictment.”
Willis said the racketeering charges have “time that you have to serve, so it’s not a probated sentence,” meaning that if convicted, the defendants will be sentenced to prison time.
Trump is the first former president in U.S. history to face criminal charges, and has now been charged in four separate cases involving allegations at the end of his presidency.
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