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Georgia prosecutors launch criminal probe into Trump’s efforts to overturn election results


WASHINGTON — Georgia prosecutors have launched a criminal investigation into former President Donald Trump’s efforts to overturn the state’s election results, NBC News confirmed Wednesday.

The investigation by Fulton County prosecutors will look into a damning phone call that Trump made to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger while he was still president in which Trump begged him to “find” the votes to reverse President Joe Biden’s victory.

Fulton County prosecutor Fani Willis sent a letter Wednesday to state government officials, including Raffensperger, requesting that their offices preserve documents related to the call, according to a state official with knowledge of the letter.

NBC News verified the contents of the letter, which explicitly states the request is part of a criminal investigation into several charges ranging from false statements to “any involvement in violence or threats related to the election’s administration.”

A spokesperson for Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr’s office confirmed they received the letter and “are in the process of reviewing and synthesizing the letter.”

Georgia is now the second state, after New York, where Trump faces a criminal investigation.

Raffensperger’s office has also opened a separate investigation into the phone call, NBC News reported earlier this week. The office confirmed that it had opened the inquiry after it received a complaint about Trump’s conduct.

During the Jan. 2 phone call, Trump told Raffensperger, “All I want to do is this. I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have. Because we won the state.”

Georgia reaffirmed Biden’s victory several times following the November election.

Willis suggested they could launch an investigation in a statement last month in which he described the phone call as “disturbing.”

“Anyone who commits a felony violation of Georgia law in my jurisdiction will be held accountable. Once the investigation is complete, this matter, like all matters, will be handled by our office based on the facts and the law,” Willis said at the time.

Willis and Raffensperger did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp also did not immediately return requests for comment.

The criminal probe, first reported Wednesday by The New York Times, comes as the Senate holds its impeachment trial against Trump for his role in the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. House Democratic managers who are prosecuting the case against the former president will deliver their opening arguments Wednesday which will include “never-seen-before” video footage of the deadly Capitol riot.

Meanwhile, Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance has been investigating “possibly extensive and protracted criminal conduct at the Trump Organization,” Trump’s family business, which could involve falsifying business records, tax fraud and insurance fraud. New York Attorney General Letitia James is also investigating four different Trump Organization real estate projects and the former president’s failed attempt to buy the NFL’s Buffalo Bills.



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