Georgia Judge Rejects Trump’s Claim of Immunity from Prosecution

by Jessica
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A state judge in Georgia has dismissed a motion by former President Donald Trump’s lawyer, who argued that Trump should be immune from prosecution for his alleged interference in the 2020 election in Georgia.

Judge Scott McAfee of the Fulton County Superior Court ruled on Friday that Trump’s claim of immunity was “meritless” and “premature”, as he has not been indicted or charged with any crime yet.

Trump is under investigation by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, who is probing whether he violated state laws by pressuring Georgia officials to overturn his election loss to President Joe Biden.

According to RawStory on Friday, September 29, 2023, Willis indicated that she may bring charges against Trump and his associates by the end of August.

Trump’s lawyer, Kenneth Chesebro, filed a motion in July, seeking to halt Willis’ investigation and disqualify her from the case.

He argued that Trump was immune from prosecution as a former president and that Willis had violated the state constitution and the grand jury secrecy rules by using a special grand jury to gather evidence against Trump.

Chesebro also claimed that Willis had a conflict of interest and a political bias against Trump, as she had made public statements about the case and had received campaign donations from groups opposed to Trump.

However, Judge McAfee rejected Chesebro’s arguments, saying that they were based on “speculation” and “conjecture”.

He said that Trump had no standing to challenge the investigation at this stage, as he had not been formally accused of any wrongdoing.

He also said that Willis had acted within her authority and discretion as the district attorney and that there was no evidence of any improper influence or prejudice on her part.

McAfee also noted that being the subject of a criminal investigation was not a basis for the courts to interfere with or stop the investigation.

He said that Trump could raise his concerns about the constitutionality of the special grand jury, the performance of the judge supervising it, and the propriety of Willis’ involvement in the case if and when he is indicted.

McAfee’s ruling was consistent with a previous decision by the Georgia Supreme Court, which unanimously dismissed Trump’s attempt to shut down Willis’ investigation in July.

The state’s highest court said that Trump’s motion was “moot” and “not ripe for review”, as he had not shown any harm or injury from the investigation.

Willis’ investigation is one of several legal challenges facing Trump, who is also facing criminal probes in New York and Washington, D.C., as well as civil lawsuits from women who have accused him of sexual misconduct.

Trump has denied any wrongdoing and has called the investigations against him a “witch hunt” by his political enemies.

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