A US grand jury probing attempts by Donald Trump and his allies to overturn his 2020 election loss in the key state of Georgia has recommended multiple indictments, the forewoman revealed on Tuesday.
In unusually public remarks on the closed-door legal process, especially since no indictments have been formally announced, Emily Kohrs said her 23-member panel had recommended charges against more than a dozen people, without naming anyone.
“There are certainly names that you would recognise, yes,” she told NBC News in a televised interview.
“There are names also that you might not recognise.” She told several outlets that in the jury’s final report, the result of seven months of work, the people and crimes referenced “is not a short list.”
Prosecutors have spent two years looking into whether the former president and his allies committed crimes in their bid to overturn his defeat in the southern state to Joe Biden by fewer than 12,000 votes.
The known targets include Trump’s former attorney Rudy Giuliani and 16 Republican activists who posed as presidential “electors” to sign certificates falsely claiming the 76-year-old Republican had won the Peach State.
Kohrs would not reveal if Trump — who has announced a third run at the White House for 2024 — was among those recommended for indictment.
But she told The New York Times it was “not going to be shocked” by the jury’s finding. “It’s not rocket science,” she said.
‘No giant plot twist’
Over the seven months, the panel took testimony from 75 witnesses, including Trump’s fourth chief of staff, Mark Meadows, Republican South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham and Giuliani.
Kohrs later told CNN that Meadows “didn’t share very much at all,” and had asserted his constitutional right not to speak.
Asked if she had security concerns about speaking so publicly about the heated topic, Kohrs said: “I’m aware of my safety, but I’m not worried.”
“I don’t think I should be — I don’t think I… or any of the jury members did anything that says we believe one way or the other about politics.”
A Georgia judge allowed the release last week of three redacted sections from the grand jury’s report, revealing that members found no evidence of widespread voter fraud, undercutting Trump’s claim that he had been robbed of the election.
The released sections did not include specific charging recommendations but revealed that the jury believed witnesses may have lied under oath.
“I will tell you that if the judge releases the recommendations, it is not going to be some giant plot twist,” Kohrs told the Times.
Democratic District Attorney Fani Willis will make the ultimate charging decision after presenting the panel’s findings to one of the criminal grand juries regularly empaneled in Georgia’s Fulton County, a process that may already have started.
The investigation was touched off by Trump’s January 2, 2021, phone call with Georgia election officials whom he infamously asked to “find” the 11,780 votes that would put him one vote ahead of Biden in the state.
Kohrs also told CNN that she had heard more of Trump’s recorded calls during the process.
The Georgia investigation is one of multiple probes into alleged criminal actions by the former president and his lieutenants, who are accused of involvement in a multi-step scheme to cling to power despite Trump’s election loss.