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Trump Seeks Court Order to Throw Out Election Investigation in Georgia

Trump Seeks Court Order to Throw Out Election Investigation in Georgia

In his latest legal maneuver, Donald J. Trump sought a court order on Friday that would throw out the work of an Atlanta special grand jury and disqualify Fani T. Willis, the prosecutor leading an investigation into election interference in Georgia.

A decision on indictments looms in the investigation, which has been in progress for more than two years. Ms. Willis, the district attorney of Fulton County, has signaled that the decision will come in the first half of August; she recently asked judges in a downtown Atlanta courthouse not to schedule trials for part of that time as she prepares to bring charges.

Mr. Trump’s lawyers made their request in a filing to Georgia’s Supreme Court. They want the court to throw out the evidence gathered by the special grand jury.

Though the Georgia Supreme Court is predominantly Republican, the Trump legal team acknowledged in its filing that its latest stratagem was a long shot, conceding that it had identified “no case in 40 years” where the court had intervened in the way it seeks. “Then again, never has there been a case like this one,” it added.

The investigation has examined whether the former president and his allies illegally interfered in the 2020 election in Georgia, where Mr. Trump lost narrowly to President Biden. The special grand jury heard evidence for roughly seven months and recommended indictments of more than a dozen people; its forewoman strongly hinted in an interview with The New York Times in February that Mr. Trump was among them. To bring any charges, Ms. Willis must now seek indictments from a regular grand jury.

The Trump team’s filing raises a number of legal concerns, both about Georgia law relating to special grand juries and about how a special grand jury was used in this inquiry.

Mr. Trump’s local legal team includes the lawyers Drew Findling, Marissa Goldberg and Jennifer Little. Their filing takes for granted that their client will be charged, saying that Ms. Willis “now seeks an indictment, the basis for which would be evidence unlawfully obtained during the special purpose grand jury’s proceedings.”

The district attorney’s office had no immediate comment on the latest filing.

Intervening in a potential criminal case before an indictment is even filed is complicated. Mr. Trump’s lawyers have already sought to scuttle the investigation with a motion, filed in March, to quash much of the collected evidence and take Ms. Willis off the investigation. To their frustration, the Superior Court judge handling the case, Robert C.I. McBurney, has yet to rule on the motion.

“Stranded between the Supervising Judge’s protected passivity and the District Attorney’s looming indictment, Petitioner has no meaningful option other than to seek this Court’s intervention,” the lawyers wrote in their filing on Friday to the State Supreme Court.

“Nothing about these processes have been normal or reasonable,” they wrote, adding that “the all-but-unavoidable conclusion is that the anomalies” are “because Petitioner is President Donald J. Trump.”


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