Arizona grand jury indicts Giuliani and 17 other Trump allies in election interference case

Those charged include Mark Meadows, former White House chief of staff, and “fake electors” who acted on the former president's behalf in Arizona after the 2020 election.

An Arizona grand jury indicted Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump's former personal lawyer, Mark Meadows, former chief of staff to former President Trump and 16 other people in an election interference case related to the 2020 elections.

According to the indictment, eleven identified people and seven others who had not yet been notified attempted to retain Trump in power even though he was defeated in Arizona by 10,000 votes.

Among the names revealed are eleven Arizona Republicans, including former GOP state chairwoman Kelli Ward and state senators Jacob Hoffman and Anthony Kern, all charged with felonies related to the "fake electors" scheme.

The other seven defendants were not named directly because they have not received the indictment notification. Still, several media outlets have already identified them by their characteristics within the accusation.

They would be Meadows, Giuliani and several advisors and lawyers related to the Trump 2020 campaign: Jenna Ellis, Christina Bobb, Boris Epshteyn, Michael Roman and John Eastman, called by the New York Times as the "architect of the false electors plan."

The charges against the 18 people named in the indictment include fraud, forgery and conspiracy.

Former President Trump was also named as an accomplice of the defendants but was not charged with any crime.

"I understand for some of you today didn't come fast enough, and I know I'll be criticized by others for conducting this investigation at all," said Democratic Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes, who announced the indictment in a recording. "But as I have stated before and will say here again today, I will not allow American democracy to be undermined. It's too important."

With this indictment, Arizona is the fourth swing state to file an election case linked to the activities of the Trump campaign in 2020.

Some of those indicted by the Arizona grand jury (Meadows, Giuliani, Ellis, Eastman and Roman) had previously been indicted in Georgia by District Attorney Fani Willis for their alleged participation to overturn Georgia's 2020 election results.

Trump, unlike the case in Arizona, was accused by prosecutor Willis of 13 counts of serious crimes.

The Arizona Republican Party reacted to the allegations by criticizing Attorney General Mayes for abuse of power.

"Today's indictments by Attorney General Kris Mayes represent a blatant and unprecedented abuse of prosecutorial power, aimed solely at distracting the public from the critical policy debates our country should be focusing on as we approach the 2024 election," the state Republican Party said in a statement. "The timing of these charges-precisely four years after the 2020 election and as President Biden seeks re-election-is suspiciously convenient and politically motivated. This is not justice; it is pure election interference."