ATLANTA (AP) — Rudy Giuliani will not appear as scheduled on Tuesday before a special grand jury in Atlanta investigating whether former President Donald Trump and others unlawfully attempted to interfere in Georgia’s 2020 general election, his lawyer said.
Last month, a judge ordered Giuliani, Trump’s lawyer and former New York mayor, to appear before the special grand jury on Tuesday.
But Giuliani’s attorney Robert Costello told The Associated Press on Monday that Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney, who oversees the special grand jury, excused Giuliani for the day.
Nothing in publicly available court documents indicates that Giuliani is excused from appearing, but McBurney has scheduled a hearing for 12:30 p.m. Tuesday to hear arguments on a court filing from Giuliani seeking to delay his appearance. In a filing Monday in court, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis asked the judge to deny Giuliani’s request for a delay and ask him to appear before the special grand jury, as ordered.
Willis opened an investigation early last year and a special grand jury with subpoena powers was appointed in May at his request.
Last month, she filed motions to compel testimony of seven Trump advisers and associates, including Giuliani. Because they don’t live in Georgia, she had to use a process that involves asking a judge in the state where they live to order them to appear.
On July 13, New York Supreme Court Justice Thomas Farber issued an order directing Giuliani to appear before the special grand jury on August 9 and any other date ordered by the Atlanta court.
Giuliani’s legal team asked Willis’ office last week to delay his appearance, saying he could not travel due to medical intervention. That request was denied after Willis’ team found evidence on social media that he had traveled since his medical procedure.
An attorney for Giuliani later clarified to Willis’ team that Giuliani was not allowed to travel by plane, but Willis still refused to postpone his appearance, the motion states.
In his Monday court filing, Willis wrote that his team obtained documents indicating that between July 19 and July 21, Giuliani purchased several plane tickets, including tickets to Rome, Italy, and Zurich. , in Switzerland, for travel dates between July 22 and July 29. Willis said his team had offered to provide alternative transportation — including a bus or train ticket — if Giuliani was not cleared to travel by plane.
Giuliani had also offered to appear virtually, for example by Zoom, his motion states.
“It is important to note here that Mr. Giuliani in no way seeks to inappropriately delay, or obstruct, these proceedings or to avoid giving evidence or testimony that is not the subject of a claim of privilege. in this matter,” the motion states, noting that Giuliani appeared virtually before the committee investigating the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol and testified for more than nine hours.
“Mr. Giuliani is prepared to do the same here under conditions that replicate grand jury proceedings,” the motion reads.
In the petition for Giuliani’s testimony, Willis identified him as both a personal attorney for Trump and a lead attorney for his campaign.
She wrote that he and others presented a Georgia State Senate subcommittee with a video recording of election workers who Giuliani said showed them “suitcases” of illegal ballots from unknown sources. , out of sight of election observers.
Within 24 hours of that Dec. 3, 2020, hearing, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office debunked the video and said it found no voter fraud had taken place on the site. Nonetheless, Giuliani continued to make statements to the public and in subsequent legislative hearings alleging widespread voter fraud using this debunked video, Willis wrote.
Evidence shows that Giuliani’s appearance and testimony at the hearing “was part of a coordinated multi-state plan by the Trump campaign to influence the results of the November 2020 election in Georgia and elsewhere,” the petition states.
Tucker reported from Washington.