Matthew DePerno, the 2022 Republican Michigan attorney general nominee, faces criminal charges for an alleged effort to gain access to voting machines after the 2020 election. Democratic nominee Joe Biden had won Michigan point, and the results were being contested by then-President Trump. The charges include undue possession of a voting machine, willfully damaging a voting machine and conspiracy, according to the special prosecutor investigating the case, NPR reports. DePerno had been endorsed in the 2022 contest by Trump. He rose to prominence after pushing Trump's baseless claims about the 2020 election in a Michigan court. DePerno then became a target of the probe into the alleged effort to access voting machines unlawfully. DePerno blasted the investigation, which Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel had shifted to a special prosecutor.
Paul Stablein, an attorney for DePerno, said his client "maintains his innocence and firmly believes that these charges are not based upon any actual truth and are motivated primarily by politics rather than evidence." Also charged was former Republican state Rep. Daire Rendon. Both Rendon and DePerno were arraigned Tuesday in Oakland County and released on bond. The special prosecutor, DJ Hilson of Muskegon County, said that the "process is still ongoing and not over." Nessel said, "The alleged actions by these defendants, and others, who worked to erode trust in our election system caused undeniable harm to our democracy." After his loss to Nessel, DePerno unsuccessfully sought election as state GOP chair.