The New York Times reports, Federal Agents Seized Phone of John Eastman, Key Figure in Jan. 6 Plan:

Federal agents armed with a search warrant have seized the phone of John Eastman, the lawyer who advised former President Donald J. Trump on key elements of the effort to overturn the results of the 2020 election, according to a court filing by Mr. Eastman on Monday.

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The seizure of Mr. Eastman’s phone is the latest evidence that the Justice Department is intensifying its sprawling criminal investigation into the various strands of Mr. Trump’s efforts to remain in power after he was defeated for re-election.

In the past week alone, the department has delivered grand jury subpoenas to a variety of figures with roles in backing Mr. Trump’s efforts and it carried out at least one other search of a key figure.

Note: The Department of Justice IG obtained warrants for the phones of Coup Plotters Jeffrey Clark, a DOJ attorney at the time, and  attorney John Eastman at the same time. Those warrants issued on the court finding probable cause existed that a crime had been committed.

The filing by Mr. Eastman, a motion to recover property from the government, said that F.B.I. agents in New Mexico, acting on behalf of the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General, stopped Mr. Eastman as he was leaving a restaurant last Wednesday and seized his iPhone.

A copy of the warrant included as an exhibit in Mr. Eastman’s filing said that the phone would be taken to either the Justice Department or the inspector general’s forensic lab in Northern Virginia.

According to the filing, the seizure of Mr. Eastman’s phone came on the same day that federal agents raided the home and seized the electronic devices of Jeffrey Clark, a former Justice Department official who was central to Mr. Trump’s attempts to coerce the department’s leaders into backing his false claims of fraud in the election.

The inspector general’s office, which has jurisdiction over investigations of Justice Department employees, also issued the warrant in the search of Mr. Clark’s home, a person familiar with the investigation said. The warrant indicated that prosecutors are investigating Mr. Clark for charges that include conspiracy to obstruct the certification of the presidential election, the person familiar with the investigation said.

A spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office in Washington, which is overseeing the inquiry, declined to comment on Mr. Eastman’s court filing.

With Mr. Eastman and Mr. Clark, the department is gathering information about two lawyers who were in close contact with Mr. Trump in the critical weeks before the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol by a pro-Trump mob.

The advice they were giving Mr. Trump involved separate but apparently intersecting proposals to provide him with a means of averting his defeat, with Mr. Clark focused on using the power of the Justice Department on Mr. Trump’s behalf and Mr. Eastman focused on disrupting the congressional certification of the election’s outcome.

The search warrant executed on Mr. Eastman by the inspector general’s office may have been issued because of his connections to Mr. Clark, which were briefly touched on at a hearing by the House select committee on Jan. 6 last week, a day after the raids on the two men.

At the hearing, Representative Liz Cheney, Republican of Wyoming and the panel’s vice chairwoman, said that Ken Klukowski, a Justice Department lawyer who was in contact with Mr. Eastman, also helped Mr. Clark draft a letter to Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia stating falsely that the Justice Department had identified “significant concerns” about the “outcome of the election” in Georgia and several other states.

The letter further recommended that Mr. Kemp call a special session of the state legislature to create “a separate slate of electors supporting Donald J. Trump.”

Mr. Klukowski, who briefly served under Mr. Clark at the Justice Department and had earlier worked at the White House budget office, also “worked with John Eastman,” Ms. Cheney said during the hearing. She went on to describe Mr. Eastman as “one of the primary architects of President Trump’s scheme to overturn the election.”

The inspector general’s office has the authority to look into any public corruption crimes committed by Justice Department personnel, said Michael R. Bromwich, a former department inspector general during the Clinton administration.

“Those investigations can lead to people and places outside the Justice Department,” Mr. Bromwich said. “There must be a connection between Eastman and someone who worked at the department.”

In a related investigation, the New York Times reports, Giuliani at Center of Georgia’s Trump Investigation:

Rudolph W. Giuliani has emerged as a central figure in a Georgia criminal investigation of efforts by Donald J. Trump and his allies to overturn his election loss in the state, with prosecutors questioning witnesses last week before a special grand jury about Mr. Giuliani’s appearances before state legislative panels after the 2020 vote, the witnesses said.

For Mr. Giuliani, the developments are the latest in a widening swath of trouble. While grand jurors were hearing testimony in Atlanta last week, the House committee in Washington investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol highlighted video footage of Mr. Giuliani’s activities in Georgia. He also participated in a scheme to create slates of fake presidential electors in 2020 that is now the subject of an intensifying investigation by the Department of Justice. (Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to Mr. Trump’s final chief of staff, recounted on Tuesday, in testimony before the Jan. 6 committee, that Mr. Giuliani had sought a pre-emptive pardon from Mr. Trump in the waning days of his presidency.)

In yet another investigation, this one into his dealings in Ukraine, federal agents seized cellphones and computers from his home and office last year. In addition, Mr. Giuliani’s law license has been suspended in New York, a rare and humbling step against a former United States attorney, and he is among the subjects of civil suits by two makers of voting machines, Dominion and Smartmatic, that seek billions of dollars in damages.

But it is the Georgia investigation that may place Mr. Giuliani in the most immediate legal jeopardy, according to lawyers involved in, or closely observing, the case. The investigation is being conducted by Fani T. Willis, the district attorney of Fulton County, which encompasses most of Atlanta.

The crux of his conduct came during two hearings in December 2020, when Mr. Giuliani appeared before state legislative panels and spent hours peddling false conspiracy theories about secret suitcases of Democratic ballots and corrupted voting machines. He told members of the State House, “You cannot possibly certify Georgia in good faith.”

He was also a central figure in the Trump campaign’s plan to urge lawmakers in swing states to appoint fake electors, which is part of the Georgia inquiry as well as the Justice Department investigation.

Three Democratic lawmakers have testified before the special grand jury about Mr. Giuliani’s appearances at the legislative hearings; Republican members are resisting efforts to compel them to testify.

“My sense is that they are being very thorough in unpacking a lot of details related to that hearing, all aspects of it,” said Senator Elena Parent, a Democrat who testified last week and attended a Dec. 3, 2020, hearing held by a State Senate panel. “I can say for someone who had been widely respected in American government, it was very astonishing and sad, for myself among many other people, to watch Giuliani behave in this manner.”

Representative Bee Nguyen, another Democrat who testified before the grand jury, attended a second hearing a week later, held by the state’s House of Representatives, at which Mr. Giuliani appeared remotely.

“It was very surreal for me to revisit everything that occurred leading up to the Dec. 10 hearing, and everything that occurred in the aftermath,” she said, adding that, in retrospect, the performance of Mr. Giuliani and his team felt like it was part of “a very coordinated effort that led up to what happened on Jan. 6.

Since the Georgia hearings were filmed, there is considerable evidence for prosecutors to work with. “There was a seven-hour video,” Senator Jennifer Jordan, another Democrat who appeared before the grand jury, said of the Senate hearing, adding, “I’m pretty sure that grand jury has viewed the whole thing in its entirety.”

Mr. Giuliani and Mr. Trump are not the only people whose conduct is being scrutinized by the grand jury; others include Mark Meadows, who as White House chief of staff traveled to Georgia in December 2020 amid an audit of absentee ballots; and Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, who called the Georgia secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, to inquire about the rules for discarding mail-in ballots.

Among the charges being weighed by Ms. Willis are racketeering and conspiracy, as well as one related to making false statements “in matters within jurisdiction of state or political subdivisions,” which would include legislative committees. The special grand jury was impaneled in early May and has up to one year to complete its work before issuing a report advising Ms. Willis on whether to pursue criminal charges. “In a perfect world, I’d be done in the next 60 to 90 days,” Ms. Willis said in an interview last month. “But I live in an imperfect world.”

Norman Eisen, who served as special counsel to the House Judiciary Committee during the first Trump impeachment, said, “This was an attempted coup using law books and statutes instead of guns, so the lawyers have to be held culpable.”

He added: “When it comes to Georgia, Giuliani may turn out to be the single most responsible person after Donald Trump for the alleged criminal conspiracy. We’ll see once the evidence comes out.”

Much of Mr. Giuliani’s conduct in Georgia was laid out last year, when a New York State appellate court suspended his law license. The court issued a 33-page report that mentioned Georgia 35 times and described “numerous false and misleading statements regarding the Georgia presidential election results” made by Mr. Giuliani. The court noted, for instance, that Mr. Giuliani had falsely claimed that tens of thousands of underage teenagers had voted illegally in Georgia, even though an audit by Georgia’s secretary of state found that no one under the age of 18 had voted in the 2020 election.

Mr. Giuliani also repeatedly claimed, including at the Dec. 3 hearing before lawmakers, that Dominion voting machines had altered votes and the election outcome. He did so even though a hand-counted state audit had backed up the results. The New York court found that he provided “no basis” for “disputing the hand-count audit.”

Clark D. Cunningham, a law professor at Georgia State University in Atlanta, said the New York court had conducted “a due process proceeding where he had every opportunity to defend himself.” He added: “He couldn’t have lost any bigger. It’s obviously not a criminal conviction, but I would say that would be a very strong indication that he is in big trouble in terms of criminal liability, because the issues are essentially the same.”

Claims that Mr. Giuliani made in Georgia are included in the civil litigation brought by Dominion and Smartmatic, which have sued a number of people and corporations that spread falsehoods about the election, including Fox News and Mike Lindell, the MyPillow chief executive and Trump ally who has become a major booster of election conspiracies.

In a deposition in the Dominion case, Mr. Giuliani said last year that he had not vetted many of the claims he had made: “It’s not my job in a fast-moving case to go out and investigate every piece of evidence that’s given to me,” he said.

The Jan. 6 hearings highlighted some of the fallout from Mr. Giuliani’s actions. During the second Georgia hearing, Mr. Giuliani zeroed in on mostly Black election workers at an Atlanta arena, likening them to drug dealers. “Look at them scurrying around with the ballots,” he said. “Nobody in the room. Hiding around. They look like they’re passing out dope, not just ballots. It is quite clear they’re stealing votes.”

Mr. Giuliani’s lies about the election, and the conduct of workers at the arena, were most forcefully debunked by fellow Republicans, including Mr. Raffensperger and his key lieutenant, Gabriel Sterling, who appeared before the Jan. 6 committee last week. Mr. Sterling memorably said “it has to stop” in imploring the president and his aides to quit making dangerous false claims.

Like Mr. Raffensperger and his staff, Georgia elections workers have told the Jan. 6 committee they were inundated with threats amid claims made by Mr. Trump and Mr. Giuliani: “I’ve lost my name and I’ve lost my reputation,” one poll worker, Ruby Freeman, said in her taped testimony. “Do you know how it feels to have the president of the United States target you?”

Note: Tucker Carlson, who interviewed “Coup Memos” lawyer John Eastman on his “White Power Hour” show on Fox News, urged fellow seditious insurrectionists to erase their text messages and emails “every single day” – actualy encouraged destruction of incriminating criminal evidence to coverup theircrimes. See, https://twitter.com/atrupar/status/1541580447469244417.




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