Former Trump White House Chief of Staff Mark meadows has reportedly struck a plea deal with Special Counsel Jack Smith in exchange for testimony in the investigation into President Trump, the U.K. Independent reported Wednesday. Meadows was reportedly granted limited immunity as part of a deal to plead guilty to “lesser” federal charges. (Update at end: Meadows’ attorney denies guilty plea.)
Meadows appears to be another victim in the D.C. establishment’s weaponization of the legal system against Trump and his supporters.
The bombshell report was buried in the report by the Independent’s Andrew Feinberg that Trump could be indicted as early as Thursday, ” It is understood that Mr Trump’s last White House chief of staff, @MarkMeadows, has agreed to plead guilty to several lesser federal crimes in exchange for his testimony under a limited grant of immunity.”
MORE: It is understood that Mr Trump's last White House chief of staff, @MarkMeadows, has agreed to plead guilty to several lesser federal crimes in exchange for his testimony under a limited grant of immunity. https://t.co/7ZMm60nhxf
— Andrew Feinberg (@AndrewFeinberg) June 7, 2023
The New York Times reported Tuesday that Meadows had testified in front of the D.C. grand jury in the Trump investigation. (TGP report.)
The Department of Justice is preparing to ask a Washington, DC grand jury to indict former president Donald Trump for violating the Espionage Act and for obstruction of justice as soon as Thursday, adding further weight to the legal baggage facing Mr Trump as he campaigns for his party’s nomination in next year’s presidential election.
The Independent has learned that prosecutors are ready to ask grand jurors to approve an indictment against Mr Trump for violating a portion of the US criminal code known as Section 793, which prohibits “gathering, transmitting or losing” any “information respecting the national defence”.
…Over the course of the last year, grand jurors have heard testimony from numerous associates of the ex-president, including nearly every employee of Mar-a-Lago, former administration officials who worked in Mr Trump’s post-presidential office and for his political operation, and former high-ranking administration officials such as his final White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows.
Mr Meadows has already given evidence before the grand jury and is said to be cooperating with the investigation into his former boss. It is understood that the former North Carolina congressman will plead guilty to several federal charges as part of a deal for which he has already received limited immunity in exchange for his testimony.
Prosecutors are also prepared to ask grand jurors to indict Mr Trump on charges that he obstructed justice during the year-long investigation and caused false statements to be made to investigators by persons working for him.
The New York Times report published Tuesday did not mention a Meadows plea deal but noted Meadows has kept a “low profile” in the investigation (excerpt):
…One inquiry is focused on Trump’s efforts to cling to power after losing the 2020 election, culminating in the attack by a pro-Trump mob on the Capitol during congressional certification of the Electoral College results on Jan. 6, 2021. The other is an investigation into Trump’s handling of hundreds of classified documents after he left office and whether he obstructed efforts to retrieve them.
It is not clear precisely when Meadows testified or if investigators questioned him about one or both of the cases.
For months, people in Trump’s orbit have been puzzled by and wary about the low profile kept by Meadows in the investigations. As reports surfaced of one witness after another going into the grand jury or to be interviewed by federal investigators, Meadows has kept largely out of sight, and some of Trump’s advisers believe he could be a significant witness in the inquiries.
Asked about the grand jury testimony, a lawyer for Meadows, George Terwilliger, said, “Without commenting on whether or not Mr. Meadows has testified before the grand jury or in any other proceeding, Mr. Meadows has maintained a commitment to tell the truth where he has a legal obligation to do so.”
Julie Kelly commented on the Meadows report, “Now hearing from reliable sources this is bullsh*t”
Trump campaign spokeswoman Liz Harrington reacted to the report on Meadows, “I don’t know the details, but I do know that this weaponization of our justice system is very disturbing…we will not have a constitutional republic.”
Trump spokesperson Liz Harrington reacts to reports that Mark Meadows has pleaded guilty as part of an immunity deal:
"I don't know the details, but I do know that this weaponization of our justice system is very disturbing…we will not have a constitutional republic." pic.twitter.com/jJMV4xoR5f
— Republican Accountability (@AccountableGOP) June 7, 2023
UPDATE: The Independent reports Meadows’ attorney denying a guilty plea, “A source who was briefed on the agreement claimed that the alleged agreement will involve the ex-chief of staff entering pleas of guilty to unspecified federal crimes but an attorney for Mr Meadows, George Terwilliger, denied that to The Independent. Mr Terwilliger said that the idea that his client would enter any guilty pleas was “complete bulls***” but did not address the matter of immunity in a brief telephone conversation with this reporter.”