Georgia grand jury probing Trump ends work, unclear if charges coming

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WASHINGTON, Jan 9 (Reuters) – The Georgia special grand jury investigating whether former President Donald Trump and his allies unlawfully sought to interfere in the state’s 2020 U.S. presidential election results has issued its final report, a court filing showed on Monday, but it remained unclear whether criminal charges will follow.

In an order, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney dissolved the grand jury now that its work is complete and set a Jan. 24 hearing to determine whether the report will be made public. The jurors recommended that their findings be released, McBurney said in the order.

The special grand jury, which was convened at the request of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, had subpoena power but not the ability to issue indictments. Willis will ultimately decide whether to bring charges against Trump or anyone else, though the jury’s report could include recommendations.

Willis, a Democrat, opened a criminal investigation soon after a January 2021 phone call in which Trump, a Republican, urged top election officials to “find” enough votes to overturn Democrat Joe Biden’s statewide victory.

The grand jury heard testimony from numerous state officials including Georgia Governor Brian Kemp and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, as well as key Trump advisers such as U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham and attorney Rudy Giuliani, many of whom unsuccessfully attempted to quash their subpoenas.

Donald Trump departs Trump Tower two days after FBI agents raided his Mar-a-Lago Palm Beach home, in New York City
Donald Trump departs Trump Tower two days after FBI agents raided his Mar-a-Lago Palm Beach home, in New York City, New york, U.S., August 10, 2022. REUTERS/David ‘Dee’ Delgado

Prosecutors have told Giuliani he is a target and could face criminal charges, as well as Trump allies who backed a scheme to appoint alternate electors in a bid to deliver Georgia’s electoral votes to Trump, rather than Biden, in the Electoral College process that determines the outcome of presidential elections.

A spokesperson for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Monday. Trump has denied wrongdoing in Georgia and has continued to claim falsely that his 2020 election loss was the result of widespread voting fraud.

A spokesperson for Willis’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Georgia investigation was one of several civil and criminal probes threatening Trump and his inner circle. The Justice Department has separate investigations into Trump’s actions following the 2020 election and his retention of classified materials after leaving the White House in 2021.

In New York, Democratic Attorney General Letitia James has sued Trump, his children and his business, accusing them of lying to banks and insurers about the true value of his assets. Manhattan prosecutors are pursuing a parallel criminal investigation. The Trump Organization, his real estate business, was convicted of tax fraud last month in a New York court.

(This story has been corrected to add the name of Georgia Governor Brian Kemp and to fix the title for Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in the fifth paragraph)

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Washington and Joseph Ax in New York; Editing by Will Dunham and Tim Ahmann

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.