A year and a half ago, after the revelations by the committee of inquiry into the attack on the US Capitol, the pressure on the Justice Department is increasing. According to the Washington Post, there are now increasing indications that the ministry is investigating the behavior of then-President Donald Trump more closely.
The question is whether Attorney General Merrick Garland could take criminal action against Trump. Critics accuse him of being too hesitant to proceed.
The newspaper, citing anonymous sources, reported Tuesday evening (local time) that prosecutors spent hours questioning witnesses before a grand jury about meetings Trump chaired in December 2020 and January 2021.
A grand jury is called in to review evidence in possible crime cases and decide whether to press charges. It had previously been assumed that these investigations were primarily related to Trump allies such as Rudy Giuliani, the newspaper continued. But prosecutors are obviously more interested in Trump’s actions than expected.
In addition, Justice Department investigators received phone records from key Trump administration officials as early as April, the newspaper wrote. The Department has not yet launched a formal criminal investigation into Republican Trump over the events surrounding the 2020 presidential election and the January 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol.
Trump had been heavily incriminated by numerous witnesses at public hearings by the Capitol attack committee in recent weeks. The body itself cannot take legal action – this is the responsibility of the Ministry of Justice.
“We intend to hold accountable anyone found criminally responsible for the events surrounding January 6 or for any attempt to obstruct the lawful transfer of power from one government to another,” Garland told the broadcaster NBC on the question of whether investigations against Trump are also in the room.
On Tuesday afternoon, Trump spoke publicly in the US capital Washington for the first time since the end of his term in office and accused the current US government of failure. “Quite simply, we had made America great again,” Trump said. “But now our country has literally been brought to its knees – and who would have thought that could happen,” Trump said in a policy speech.
He cited the high inflation rate and high fuel prices as examples, but he focused his speech on the subject of internal security. “Our country and the lives of our citizens are at stake and we have no time to waste. Our country is in a criminal state like we’ve never experienced before,” he said – without backing it up with numbers.