Georgia judge drops several charges pending against Trump in election interference case News
Sgt. Dana M Clarke // Public domain
Georgia judge drops several charges pending against Trump in election interference case

A Georgia judge on Wednesday dropped three charges pending against former US President Donald Trump as part of an ongoing election interference case.

In August, Trump was indicted, accused along with several co-defendants of having orchestrated a racketeering scheme aimed at intentionally altering the results in Georgia of the 2020 US presidential elections.

On Wednesday, Judge Scott McAfee of the Fulton County Superior Court ruled that six of the charges should be dropped for a “lack of detail concerning an essential legal element,” an oversight the judge described as “fatal.”

As written, these six counts contain all the essential elements of the crimes but fail to allege sufficient detail regarding the nature of their commission, i.e., the underlying felony solicited. Kimbrough, 300 Ga. at 884. They do not give the Defendants enough information to prepare their defenses intelligently, as the Defendants could have violated the Constitutions and thus the statute in dozens, if not hundreds, of distinct ways.

The counts, as numbered in the indictment, were 2, 5, 6, 23, 28, and 38, all of which pertained to alleged attempts to compel public officers to violate their oaths of office. The charges pertaining to Trump specifically were 5, 28, and 38.

As summarized in Wednesday’s ruling, Count 5 alleged that Trump urged the speaker of Georgia’s House of Representatives to call a special session for the unlawful appointment of presidential electors; Count 28 alleged that Trump and former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows of having solicited Georgia’s Secretary of State to unlawfully influence the election results; and Count 38 alleged Trump solicited the same Secretary of State to decertify the election.

The other dropped charges relate to similar allegations against former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, attorney and former academic John Eastman, and Georgia lawyers Ray Stallings Smith III and Bob Cheeley.