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Fulton DA Fights Efforts to Unseal Grand Jury Report

Five months after the release of a redacted version of a Georgia special grand jury report on interference in the 2020 election, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis asked a state appeals court to keep the full report under seal "at least until final charging decisions have been made" in the coming weeks by a second grand jury, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. A filing by Willis' office, calling the report "intended for a district attorney's evaluation," responded to an appeal filed by a coalition of media organizations, including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, which argued that the report was a court record subject to disclosure and that the public interest demanded that the full document be released. The outlets asked the court to overturn a February decision from Fulton Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney in which he ruled that the rights of future defendants needed to be protected, even though grand jurors had requested that their recommendations be made public. “There was very limited due process in this process for those who might now be named as indictment-worthy in the final report,” McBurney wrote.

The special grand jury met for nearly eight months between May 2022 and January 2023, hearing testimony from about 75 witnesses and collecting evidence for Willis. The investigative body did not have the power to issue indictments but its report recommended multiple people be criminally charged, several members previously told the Journal-Constitution. The redacted version of the report did include a few notable disclosures, including that jurors were in unanimous agreement that there was no evidence of widespread fraud in Georgia’s 2020 elections. Willis has implied she will indict Trump and others next month and urged law enforcement to prepare because her decision could “provoke a significant public reaction.” Two regular grand juries were seated earlier this month that are expected to consider any possible charges.


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