A first Grand Jury has collected evidence for Fulton County DA Fani Wiiis….
The DA now has decide if she will use the grand jury info for a second grand jury to pass up criminal charges against rge ex-President or any of a possible numbers of people who were involved in the case in various ways….
The report remains secret, although a hearing is scheduled for Tuesday to determine if any or all of it will be made public. Nearly 20 people known to have been named targets of the investigation could face charges, including Rudolph W. Giuliani, Mr. Trump’s former personal lawyer, and David Shafer, the head of the Georgia Republican Party.
Fani T. Willis, the district attorney of Fulton County, which encompasses most of Atlanta, will need to make her case to a regular grand jury if she seeks indictments, which would likely come by May. That means the nation could be in for months more waiting and speculating, particularly if a judge decides after this week’s hearing not to make public the report’s recommendations…
Legal experts see a number of potential criminal charges; even Mr. Trump’s comments to Mr. Raffensperger could be construed as violating a state law against influencing or intimidating individuals involved in a nonjudicial government proceeding, like the certification of election. That is one of the arguments made by a bipartisan Brookings Institution panel that has exhaustively studied the Georgia investigation.
“We collectively thought that there’s a substantial likelihood of some very serious charges,” said Gwendolyn Keyes Fleming, a co-author of a Brookings report and a former district attorney in DeKalb County, which includes part of Atlanta.
Among the Brookings findings: Mr. Trump’s call to Mr. Raffensperger could open him up to first-degree criminal solicitation to commit election fraud, a felony, as could his call to Ms. Watson. By setting up the electors scheme, Mr. Trump could be accused of soliciting others to engage in what amounted to illegal “tampering” with the legitimate electors list, as defined under Georgia law, and by soliciting the “counterfeiting” of the state’s electoral ballots…
The Brookings panel also found that Mr. Trump may have violated a general criminal solicitation statute and a law that specifically prohibits interfering with primaries and elections. He could be accused of illegally conspiring with Mr. Giuliani, Mr. Eastman and others to commit election fraud through the false elector scheme. (Greg Jacob, who was chief counsel for Vice President Mike Pence, told the Jan. 6 committee that Mr. Eastman admitted in front of Mr. Trump that his plan to have Mr. Pence obstruct the electoral certification violated the law.).
Still, some lawyers foresee obstacles…..
If he is indicted, Mr. Trump could seek to have his case removed to the federal court system, part of a potentially protracted legal fight that could end up before the U.S. Supreme Court, and possibly push his trial deep into the 2024 presidential campaign. His lawyers are likely to argue that he is immune from prosecution by virtue of his status as a former president, or that his comments to Mr. Raffensperger were protected under the First Amendment.
As he maintains his innocence, Mr. Trump is turning adversity into opportunity.
“As has been stated many times concerning the World’s longest running Witch Hunt, my phone call(s) to Georgia Officials were PERFECT,” a recent solicitation from his campaign declared. “Please contribute ANY AMOUNT RIGHT NOW to show your support.”….
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