On Tuesday, the district attorney for the Atlanta area said that a decision on whether to seek indictments against Donald Trump or his aides in connection with the investigation into his efforts to sabotage the 2020 election was “imminent.”
“Decisions are imminent,” Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis said during a Tuesday court hearing called by the Georgia trial court judge overseeing the “special purpose grand jury” that Willis has used to gather evidence over the last year.
Breaking:Fulton County DA says a Grand Jury recommends Indictments in the investigation of Trump’s attempts to overturn the 2020 election. Charges may fall under GA Racketeering Statutes.
State charges can’t be pardoned by presidents.#FreshResistshttps://t.co/ISzLbzDicf
— Southern Sister Resister – Wordsmith #IAmTheStorm (@ResisterSis20) January 25, 2023
This comment was made by Willis as she asked Judge Robert McBurney to reject requests for the public release of the results of her investigation, which she performed alongside the special grand jury looking into Trump and his inner circle and lasted for a full year.
In spite of losing Georgia by over 11,000 votes, Trump and his associates have spent the last year trying to overturn the results, and Willis has been examining their efforts for the past year. A special grand jury investigated President Trump’s January 2 phone call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, in which Trump allegedly instructed Raffensperger to “find” the 270 votes he needed to defeat Joe Biden in Georgia.
And it called high-up Trump supporters like White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, former national security advisor Michael Flynn, attorney John Eastman, and Sen. Lindsey Graham in an effort to uncover evidence of Trump’s nationwide campaign to undermine the election (R-S.C.).
Earlier this month, in early January, the special grand jury finished its investigation and recommended that its findings be made public. McBurney subsequently convened a meeting to deliberate whether to reveal the report’s findings and recommendations or keep them under wraps. To the judge, Willis explained that releasing the report could compromise future prosecutions.
When the media asks questions and the world takes notice, the government knows what they’re talking about. Willis stressed the importance of considering the rights of potential future defendants, saying, “We must be cognizant of protecting future defendants’ rights.”
The unusual grand jury statute in Georgia that prompted Tuesday’s discussion allows prosecutors to impanel a “special purpose grand jury” that lacks the power to bring formal indictments but can assist prosecutors in gathering information regarding a certain topic. Willis must present her case to a standard grand jury for indictments to be issued if she chooses to press charges against Trump or anybody else.
Lawyer Thomas Clyde, who represents many media sites that have advocated for the report’s publication, urged McBurney to side with the grand jury rather than Willis.
Clyde argued that the study should be made public immediately and in its entirety.
While investigations and grand jury hearings are still ongoing, he said, the results of criminal investigations are often made public.
McBurney pointed out that the exceptional release of information and evidence by the House Jan. 6 select committee and from witnesses being called before a federal grand jury investigating the same subjects had not hampered Willis’ investigation. Additionally, he pointed out that there was little to prevent grand jurors from simply informing others about the report’s findings.
McBurney stated he needed more time to review the arguments and that his decision would give ample warning before the report was made public.
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