According to a letter she issued to a top local law enforcement officer, the prosecutor in charge of the investigation into former President Donald J. Trump and his associates in Georgia stated on Monday that she hopes to announce any indictments by mid-July at the earliest.
The Fulton County, Georgia, district attorney, Fani T. Willis, stated in her letter that any charges would be brought during the July 11–September 1 court session. Ms. Willis stated in January that the investigation’s charging conclusions were “imminent.” Her schedule, however, has been delayed in part as a result of the witnesses’ efforts to cooperate as the inquiry draws to a close.
Ms. Willis underlined in the letter that local law enforcement also needs time to plan for potential security risks. A motion was filed last week by Ms. Willis’s office to have a lawyer representing 10 Republicans who were part of a phony slate of electors that attempted to keep Mr. Trump in office even after he lost the Georgia 2020 election removed. This further complicated the situation.
“In the near future, I will announce charging decisions resulting from the investigation my office has been conducting into possible criminal interference in the administration of Georgia’s 2020 General Election,” Ms. Willis wrote in the letter, which was sent to the sheriff of Fulton County, Patrick Labat, and was first reported by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“I am providing this letter to bring to your attention the need for heightened security and preparedness in the coming months due to this pending announcement.” The investigation by Ms. Willis’ office into possible criminal interference in Georgia’s 2020 presidential race, in which Mr. Trump narrowly lost to Vice President Biden, has lasted more than two years.
A special grand jury that heard testimony in the case for approximately seven months considered indicting more than a dozen people, and its forewoman made a strong suggestion that Mr. Trump was one of them in an interview with The New York Times in February. Ms. Willis will ultimately determine which charges to present to a regular grand jury.
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Her letter, which several local officials received as copies, raised great worries about courthouse security following the announcement of her plans. “Open-source intelligence has indicated the announcement of the decisions, in this case, may provoke a significant public reaction,” Ms. Willis wrote.
“We have seen in recent years that some may go outside of public expressions of opinion that are protected by the First Amendment to engage in acts of violence that will endanger the safety of our community. As leaders, it is incumbent upon us to prepare.”
Religious Pop Star Conveys ‘God and Faith’ to Secular Israe. Increase in Strep. Here Are Some Tips to Reduce Your Risk. Ms. Willis had been worried about security for a while, so she had several staff members get bulletproof jackets.
She sent a letter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Atlanta field office in the early months of 2022, just before the special grand jury’s first hearings to review the case’s evidence and hear testimony were to begin. Ms. Willis requested in her letter that the FBI carry out a risk assessment of the county courthouse in downtown Atlanta and “provide protective resources to include intelligence and federal agents.”
In the F.B.I. letter, Ms. Willis also mentioned that Mr. Trump had called the prosecutors looking into him “vicious, horrible people” and expressed the hope that “we are going to have in this country the biggest protests we have ever had in Washington, D.C., in New York, in Atlanta and elsewhere because our country and our elections are corrupt” at a rally in Conroe, Texas.
According to Ms. Willis’ report, Mr. Trump had stated at the same gathering that if re-elected, he may pardon those found guilty of crimes connected to the incident that took place at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.
Breaking News: Fani Willis, the Atlanta prosecutor investigating Donald Trump in Georgia, said she would announce any indictments between mid-July and September. https://t.co/ZS2VlPmbDy
— The New York Times (@nytimes) April 24, 2023
As Mr. Trump and his associates spread bogus allegations of electoral fraud in the weeks following the 2020 election, armed pro-Trump protestors frequently emerged near the Georgia State Capitol building. Armed counterprotesters were also present in the streets on at least one occasion.
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and his staff left their offices at the State Capitol on January 6, 2021 due to worries about a gathering of pro-Trump protesters, some of whom were carrying long guns. In the past, Mr. Trump had referred to Mr. Raffensperger as a “enemy of the people” for what he saw to be his improper management of the Georgia election process.
In a letter to the F.B.I., Ms. Willis stated that “we must work together to keep the public safe and ensure that we do not have a tragedy in Atlanta similar to what happened at the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021.” The legal counsel for Mr. Trump submitted a move to nullify the special grand jury’s final findings in Georgia last month.
Parts of the study, which are still under wraps, suggest indicting unnamed individuals. Additionally, the motion requests that Ms. Willis’s office be excluded from the proceeding. The attorneys repeated in a statement on Monday that they thought the probe thus far had been a “deeply flawed legal process.”
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