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Trump Probe in Georgia Might Lead to 'Prison Sentences': DA Fani Willis

Newsweek 9/15/2022 Nick Reynolds
An exterior view of the Superior Court building of Fulton County on August 31, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia. Fulton Country District Attorney Fani Willis continues to seek witness testimony in her investigation into whether former president Donald Trump attempted to interfere in the 2020 presidential election in Georgia. © Megan Varner/Getty Images An exterior view of the Superior Court building of Fulton County on August 31, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia. Fulton Country District Attorney Fani Willis continues to seek witness testimony in her investigation into whether former president Donald Trump attempted to interfere in the 2020 presidential election in Georgia.

A Georgia prosecutor told The Washington Post that her office believed a number of former President Donald Trump's associates could see jail time regarding their efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani T. Willis told the Post that some of the 17 individuals under investigation might have committed offenses serious enough to merit incarceration, with potentially more targets being added to the list in the coming months.

The list includes Trump's friend and former attorney, Rudy Giuliani, as well as more than a dozen would-be Trump electors who produced unofficial records falsely declaring Trump as the winner of the state's election.

"The allegations are very serious. If indicted and convicted, people are facing prison sentences," Willis said.

Trump has already faced scrutiny for leaked phone calls in which he appeared to attempt to influence Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to "find" him roughly 12,000 votes, enough to change the final result.

In addition to figures like Giuliani, Willis' office has interviewed others such as Boris Epshteyn, whom the state said in legal filings possessed "unique knowledge" of the Trump campaign's efforts to "submit false certificates of vote to former Vice President Michael Pence and others."

And while not under investigation, others, like Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson, have faced continual public scrutiny for their roles in attempting to deliver false electors up to and including January 6, 2021.

A decision on whether Trump could be forced to testify in the investigation could be made "late this fall," Willis added.

The comments come amid a flurry of legal activity involving the former president and his allies regarding the outcome of the 2020 election, which Trump narrowly lost in crucial battleground states like Michigan, Arizona and Georgia.

At the start of the summer, federal agents issued subpoenas to a number of Trump allies in its investigation of his efforts to sway the result in those closely contested states.

Trump associates, like South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, have continued to fight subpoenas from the Fulton County DA's office requiring them to testify in the case, while others, including MyPillow CEO and Trump acolyte Mike Lindell, have found themselves under investigation for their roles in alleged election interference in other states.

Meanwhile, Trump and his family remain under investigation by New York Attorney General Letitia James into Trump's real estate business for allegedly inflating the value of their properties. On Thursday, James' office rejected an offer from Trump's lawyers to settle the case, setting the stage for the state to file a future fraud lawsuit against him.

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