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First on CNN: Fulton County DA to present Trump election subversion case to grand jury early next week


By Sara Murray, Jeremy Herb and Marshall Cohen, CNN

Washington (CNN) — An Atlanta-area prosecutor has notified at least two witnesses to appear before a grand jury early next week, the most significant indication of her intention to seek indictments in the investigation of how Donald Trump and others tried to overturn the 2020 election in Georgia.

Former Georgia Lt. Gov Geoff Duncan, a Republican, said Saturday on CNN that he has been told to appear Tuesday before a Fulton County grand jury to testify about the efforts by Trump and his allies. Independent journalist George Chidi posted on social media later Saturday that he’d been told to appear before the grand jury on Tuesday, too.

The upcoming appearances signal that Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is moving forward with a grand jury presentation where she’s expected to seek charges against more than a dozen people stemming from her investigation into the efforts to overturn the 2020 election.

The Fulton County probe brings the possibility of a fourth indictment against Trump, taking the GOP frontrunner even further into uncharted legal territory. Trump’s legal troubles have dominated the Republican primary for months, with the former president casting his indictments as politically motivated and frequently utilizing them in fundraising pitches.

“I did just receive notification to appear on Tuesday morning at the Fulton County grand jury and I certainly will be there to do my part in recounting the facts,” Duncan, a CNN contributor, told CNN’s Fredricka Whitfield on Saturday.

“I have no expectations as to the questions, and I’ll certainly answer whatever questions are put in front of me,” Duncan said.

Willis, an elected Democrat, has been eyeing conspiracy and racketeering charges in her probe, which would allow her to bring a case against multiple defendants. The wide-ranging criminal investigation has focused on efforts to pressure state election officials, the plot to put forward fake electors and a breach of voting systems in rural Coffee County, Georgia.

A spokesperson for Willis declined to comment on Saturday.

The expected charges would mark the culmination of a nearly three-year investigation, which Willis launched in early 2021 soon after Trump called Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and pressured the Republican to “find” the votes necessary for Trump to win the state.

At a campaign event earlier this week, Trump continued to insist it was a “perfect phone call.”

The charges in Georgia would follow special counsel Jack Smith’s federal charges against Trump over efforts to overturn the 2020 election, as well as the special counsel’s indictment of Trump for the mishandling of classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida and New York state criminal charges over falsified business records. Trump denies wrongdoing in all cases.

The witnesses Willis has subpoenaed to testify when she presents her case include Duncan, Chidi and former Georgia state Sen. Jen Jordan, a Democrat. All of them previously testified before a special purpose grand jury tasked with investigating the Trump case, which heard from more than 75 witnesses in all.

Georgia law is unusual in that special purpose grand juries – which have broad investigative powers – are not permitted to issue indictments. When the subpoenaed witnesses appear before the regular grand jury, those grand jurors will hear the witnesses’ testimony for the first time with a narrower purpose at hand: to approve or reject indictments.

As her investigation has expanded, Willis has been weighing racketeering charges in the Trump case. RICO – the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act – is a statute the district attorney has spoken fondly of and used in unorthodox ways to bring charges against teachers as well as musicians in the Atlanta area.

This story has been updated with additional information.

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Article Topic Follows: CNN - US Politics

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