A US congressional committee has claimed that Trump has engaged in a “criminal plot” to prevent the transfer of power
The congressional committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol said on Wednesday that former President Donald Trump may have engaged in criminal conduct in his attempt to reverse his election defeat.
“Evidence and information available to the Commission establishes a good faith belief that Mr. Trump and others have engaged in criminal and/or fraudulent acts,” the commission said in a court note.
“The Select Committee also has a good faith basis for concluding that the President and members of his campaign have engaged in a criminal conspiracy to defraud the United States,” the lawsuit said.
The document is one of the most detailed findings to date from the commission, and suggests it may prompt prosecutors to formally charge Trump with criminal wrongdoing.
The court document was filed in federal court in Los Angeles as part of the US House of Representatives Select Committee’s dispute with John Eastman, the attorney who advised Trump on a plan to invalidate election results in key battleground states.
Eastman sued the commission in December, seeking to block a congressional subpoena requiring him to turn over thousands of emails.
Members of the select committee said they would consider passing evidence of criminal behavior by Trump to the US Department of Justice. Such a move, known as a criminal referral, would be largely symbolic but would increase political pressure on Attorney General Merrick Garland to indict the former president.
Representatives for Eastman and Trump did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Trump has repeatedly described the Select Commission’s investigation as a politically motivated investigation.
The lawsuit filed with the court contained emails obtained by the selection committee from the day of the January 6 attack, including a letter in which former Vice President’s attorney Mike Pence said that no judge would support Eastman’s legal strategy to overturn Trump’s election defeat.
“Thanks to your nonsense, we are now under siege,” Pence’s attorney, Greg Jacob, wrote to Eastman.
Eastman replied, “The reason for the ‘blockade’ is that you and your boss did not do what was necessary to allow this to be broadcast publicly so that the American people could see for themselves what happened.”
“Eastman’s emails may appear to show that he helped Donald Trump advance a corrupt scheme to disrupt the electoral college vote count and a conspiracy to obstruct the transfer of power,” commission leaders said in a statement.
Lawyers in California said Tuesday they are investigating Eastman and whether he acted unethically in his business for Trump. The investigation may result in disciplinary action against Eastman, such as the suspension of his legal license.
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