All the bombshell charges against Trump and his allies in Georgia RICO case

Ex-president will face 13 criminal counts in Georgia, the second state-level case brought against him

John Bowden
Washington DC
Wednesday 16 August 2023 11:28 BST
Donald Trump indicted for fourth time

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Louise Thomas

Louise Thomas


Donald Trump and members of his 2020 campaign legal team were slapped with a comprehensive list of criminal charges related to their efforts to change the lawful results of the presidential election in Georgia late Monday evening.

A wide range of charges were listed on the document, unsealed just before midnight after hours of work by the grand jury, containing more than 30 in total and climbing to nearly 100 pages in length.

District attorney Fani Willis spoke just before midnight, calling the efforts of the Trump team a “criminal conspiracy”.

The list of criminal counts itself was overshadowed only by the sheer number of individuals connected to Mr Trump who have now been charged. Every prominent member of Mr Trump’s legal team, including Rudy Giuliani, Jenna Ellis, Kenneth Chesebro, Sidney Powell and John Eastman are now under indictment, as is former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows. The list goes on to include a former publicist for the rapper Ye, better known as failed (two-time?) presidential contender Kanye West, as well as a currently-sitting member of the Georgia state Senate, Shawn Still.

A total of nineteen people are charged in the indictment, with nearly three dozen unindicted co-conspirators also named.

Mr Trump himself faces 13 criminal counts, including one he shares with every other defendant: A violation of Georgia’s Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) statute, which charges those who take actions in service of a criminal enterprise.

He also faces 12 other charges, including: Conspiracy to impersonate a public officer, two counts of conspiracy to commit forgery, two counts of conspiracy to make false statements under oath, two counts of conspiracy to file false documents, two counts of solicitation of a public officer, filing false documents, conspiracy to solicit false statements, and making false statements.

Mr Meadows, once a GOP congressman and later seen as a yes-man who fulfilled Mr Trump’s wishes in the White House after previous chiefs of staff had sought to curb the president’s base instincts, faces just one charge in addition to the RICO violation: Solicitation of a public officer.

Mr Giuliani, the ex-mayor who saw his law license suspended after he spread falsehoods and conspiracies about the election, faces 13 charges: The RICO charge, three counts of soliciting public officers, three counts of making false statements under oath, one count of conspiracy to impersonate a public officer, three counts of conspiring to commit forgery, one count of conspiring to make false statements, and one count of conspiring to file false documents.

Some of the most serious charges aimed at his legal team fell upon the shoulders of Ms Powell, the attorney excommunicated by the Trump team in the final days of their effort to overturn the election as they derided her conspiracy theories as “crazy”. According to prosecutors, Ms Powell was involved in the voting systems breach that occurred in Coffee County as Trump supporters sought to obtain private voter data in their quest to prove nonexistent election fraud.

Trevian Kutti, a media operative who formerly worked for Ye, was also charged for her alleged attempts to intimidate two women, a mother and her adult daughter, who served as poll workers in Georgia for the election. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution had reported that Ms Kutti’s involvement in what became a racist campaign of harassment against the two women was likely to be part of the indictment given that numerous people connected to that harassment had been interviewed.

The state’s former GOP chair, David Shafer, is ensnared in the probe as well. He marks the second state GOP chairman to face indictment for his role in the attempt to overturn the election, following Michigan’s just days ago.

Each charge is different and carries different sentencing guidelines. District Attorney Fani Willis pointed out in response to a reporter’s question Monday evening that the RICO violation, of which all 19 defendants are charged, carries a mandatory jail sentence.

Monday marked the second time Mr Trump has been criminally indicted at the state level. He was previously charged with more than 30 counts of falsifying business records in connection to an alleged hush money scheme.

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