Rudy Giuliani

Rudy Giuliani turns himself in on Georgia 2020 election charges; bond set at $150,000

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has set a deadline of noon on Friday for the people indicted last week in the election subversion case to turn themselves in.

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Rudy Giuliani, who served as a personal attorney to former President Donald Trump, traveled to Atlanta on Wednesday and surrendered to authorities at a Fulton County jail on charges related to the racketeering case against him and more than a dozen other allies for their alleged role in trying to overturn the 2020 election results in Georgia.

The former New York City mayor, celebrated as “America’s mayor” for his leadership after 9/11, is charged as a co-conspirator with Trump and 17 other people under Georgia’s Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. His bond has been set at $150,000, second only to Trump’s $200,000.

Jail records showed he was booked Wednesday afternoon.

Outside the Fulton County Jail Wednesday afternoon, Giuliani laughed when asked if he regretted allying himself with Trump.

“I am very, very honored to be involved in this case because this case is a fight for our way of life," Giuliani told reporters. "This indictment is a travesty. It’s an attack on -- not just me, not just President Trump, not just the people in this indictment, some of whom I don’t even know – this is an attack on the American people."

Two sources familiar with the matter say Giuliani was seeking local counsel in Atlanta to assist him in the case. Those sources say Giuliani had reached out to associates like Tim Parlatore and Bernie Kerik for assistance in finding an Atlanta-based lawyer.

New York-based attorney John Esposito of the law firm Aidala, Bertuna and Kamins was traveling to Atlanta with Giuliani to handle his bail and surrender, according to NBC News.

Giuliani, 79, said he did not know if he would enter a plea at his booking, but added that when he does, he will plead not guilty. He spoke to reporters outside his Manhattan residence Wednesday morning, before leaving for Atlanta and said he is "fighting for justice."

"I'm going to Georgia and I'm feeling very very good about it because I feel like I'm defending the rights of all Americans as I did so many times as a United States Attorney," Giuliani said. "People like to say I'm different, I'm the same Rudy Giuliani that took down the mafia, that made New York City the safest city in America, reduced crime more than any mayor in the history of any city, anywhere."

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis set a deadline of noon on Friday for the people indicted in the case to turn themselves in. Her team has been negotiating bond amounts and conditions with lawyers for the defendants before they surrender at the jail, The Associated Press reports. The former mayor’s bond has not yet been set. 

Willis has said that, if convicted, Giuliani will be sentenced to prison. Giuliani has denied wrongdoing, arguing he had a right to raise questions about what he believed to be election fraud. He has called the indictment “an affront to American democracy” and an “out and out assault on the First Amendment.”

Trump said he plans to turn himself in to authorities on Thursday.

“We look at the facts, we look at the law, and we bring charges,” the district attorney said.

Giuliani was one of 19 people named in a nearly 100-page indictment detailing dozens of acts Trump and his allies committed to undo his defeat in the state. Such allegations include beseeching the secretary of state to find enough votes for him to win; harassing a state election worker; and attempting to persuade lawmakers to ignore the will of voters.

Giuliani is accused of spearheading Trump’s efforts to compel state lawmakers in Georgia and other closely contested states to ignore the will of voters and illegally appoint electoral college electors favorable to Trump.

Giuliani, specifically, was charged with making false statements for allegedly lying to lawmakers by claiming that more than 96,000 mail-in ballots were counted in Georgia despite there being no record of them having been returned to a county elections office, and that a voting machine in Michigan wrongly recorded 6,000 votes for Biden that were actually cast for Trump.

DA Willis has said the defendants would be allowed to voluntarily surrender by noon Aug. 25. She also said she plans to ask for a trial date within six months and that she intends to try the defendants as a group.

"The indictment alleges that rather than abide by Georgia’s legal process for election challenges, the defendants engaged in a criminal racketeering enterprise to overturn Georgia’s presidential election result,” Willis said at a news conference.

The indictment bookends a remarkable crush of criminal cases — four in five months, each in a different city — that would be daunting for anyone, never mind someone like Trump who is simultaneously balancing the roles of criminal defendant and presidential candidate.

David Shafer, who's a former Georgia Republican Party chair and served as one of 16 fake electors for Trump, and Cathy Latham, who's accused in the Coffee County breach and was also a fake elector, turned themselves in early Wednesday morning. Also surrendering Wednesday were lawyers Ray Smith and Kenneth Chesebro, who prosecutors said helped organize the fake electors meeting at the state Capitol in December 2020.

Attorney John Eastman, who pushed a plan to keep Trump in power, and Scott Hall, a bail bondsman who was accused of participating in a breach of election equipment in Coffee County, turned themselves in Tuesday.

Copyright NBC New York/Associated Press
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