Another Indictment on the Horizon for Trump

Atlanta Prosecutor Fani Willis implies that Trump will be indicted in the Georgia election probe this summer. She warns local law enforcement agencies of a potentially violent reaction to that key milestone in her two-year investigation in a letter to local law enforcement agencies, which was first reported by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. According to the letter, based on her election interference investigation into former President Donald Trump and his allies, Atlanta-area District Attorney Fani Willis will announce “charging decisions” this summer.

The DA stated in her letter to Fulton County Sheriff Patrick Labat that she would announce “charging decisions” related to the inquiry between July 11 and September 1. The DA further stated that she wanted to give law enforcement agencies enough time to prepare for the “significant public reaction” that her announcement would elicit. She explained that in recent years, people have engaged in acts of violence to promote public expressions of their opinion, which the First Amendment protects. She added that as leaders, it is their duty to be prepared.

 While Trump was not summoned to testify in the investigation, some legal experts believe he might be a target. Trump has frequently stated that he did nothing illegal following the election. According to Jessica Levinson, a professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, Willis’s warning to law enforcement indicates that charges against Trump are probable. “She’s sending out a save-the-date card,” said Ms. Levinson.

For over two years, Willis, a Democrat, has been investigating Trump’s efforts to overturn his electoral setback in Georgia. In the inquiry, no indictments have been made. Willis’s comments on Monday did not suggest whether charges would be filed; it strongly implied that charges would be filed in the summer, potentially against Mr. Trump.

As part of her investigation, she has looked into Trump’s allies and a group of activists who convened in the Georgia capital after the election and decided to certify Mr. Trump as the state’s victor, despite the vote tally showing Democrat Joe Biden had won.

Willis’ letter arrived roughly a week after she stated in a legal petition that some self-identified “alternate electors” had turned on each other and should not be represented by the same counsel.

Willis noted in the motion that her office had questioned several of the 16 Republican Party activists. According to the District Attorney’s Office, several people interviewed on April 12 and 14 indicated a person participating in the elector scheme “committed acts that violate Georgia law.” The correspondence did not describe the person accused of misconduct or the alleged conduct.

A special grand jury was convened at Willis’ request in May 2022. In January, it released a report summarizing a yearlong investigation into potential electoral meddling in the state’s 2020 presidential election.

The grand jury called 75 witnesses, including notable Republicans like Rudy Giuliani and South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham. Although the special grand jury lacked the jurisdiction to make charges, the grand jury concluded that witnesses may have committed perjury in sections of its findings that were made public. Willis, who has access to the whole report, can now pursue indictments from conventional criminal grand juries.

Trump requested a judge dismiss the inquiry, claiming that it has been “tainted by improper influences,” such as public remarks made by Willis and a political event she organized that posed a conflict of interest.

Trump’s plea to terminate the probe has yet to be decided by a court.

Trump lost the election in Georgia by around 12,000 votes out of five million cast in November 2020, becoming the first Republican presidential candidate to lose there since 1992. Trump and his supporters claimed extensive fraud. Still, statewide recounts and a partial forensic audit ordered by the Georgia secretary of state revealed no evidence of substantial fraud, and judicial challenges were unsuccessful.

Trump’s efforts to overturn the vote included direct calls to Georgia’s Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who oversees elections, and his office’s lead investigator. Willis’ inquiry was partly sparked by recordings of those discussions, which were handed to the special grand jury.