Federal prosecutors working for special counsel Jack Smith said former president Donald Trump “sent” supporters to the U.S. Capitol in order to criminally block the election results on Jan. 6, 2021. This was a step further than their August indictment. They said they intend to introduce evidence in March of how his acts before the November 2020 presidential election and the subsequent alleged threats established motive, intent and preparation for attempting to subvert Joe Biden’s legitimate election victory, the Washington Post reports. “Evidence of the defendant’s post-conspiracy embrace of particularly violent and notorious rioters is admissible to establish the defendant’s motive and intent on January 6 — that he sent supporters, including groups like the Proud Boys, whom he knew were angry, and whom he now calls ‘patriots,’ to the Capitol to achieve the criminal objective of obstructing the congressional certification,” prosecutors alleged in a nine-page filing.
Trump spokesman Steven Cheung accused Smith of trying to interfere in next year’s presidential election, in which Trump is the leading candidate for the Republican nomination. Even though it is not unusual for prosecutors to make public new evidence and allegations as a trial approaches, Cheung criticized the government for “trying to include claims that weren’t anywhere to be found” in the August indictment. Trump has pleaded not guilty to the four charges he faces in D.C. He is accused of plotting to defraud the federal election process, obstructing Congress’s certification of the vote in the 2021 Capitol attack and depriving Americans of their civil right to have their votes counted. The former president faces three other separate trials in Florida, Georgia and New York. Trump has denied all wrongdoing.