DOJ probe of fake elector conspiracy focusing on Trump's inner circle: CNN
Rudy Giuliani, photo by Gage Skidmore.

Donald Trump's inner circle is the focus of an investigation by the Department of Justice into the fraudulent electors that were submitted to Congress by Republicans in multiple states.

"Justice Department prosecutors have subpoenaed information about some of former President Donald Trump's lawyers and closest advisers as part of their criminal investigation into efforts to put forward fake slates of electors in the 2020 election, a source familiar with the investigation told CNN. The subpoena asks a witness connected to a slate of "alternate" electors for Trump in a state that Joe Biden won to provide to a federal grand jury any communications with government employees, with the Trump campaign and with some of the most prominent people around Trump in 2020, according to the source familiar with the probe," CNN reported Wednesday.

Earlier on Wednesday, The New York Times reported the focus was on lawyers, including Giuliani, Eastman, Jenna Ellis and Kenneth Chesebro.

The CNN list also includes advisor Boris Epshteyn and Giuliani sidekick Bernard Kerik along with Trump lawyers Joe diGenova, Victoria Toensing .

"The subpoena, the source said, specifically asks about the signing or mailing of certificates of elector votes for Trump in 2020," CNN reported. "Legal experts have said that the Republican electors who sent the fake certificates or anyone who facilitated the plot could be vulnerable to prosecution, including for providing false voting documents to the federal government."

Nobody has yet been charged for the alternate electors.

"In March, a federal judge in California ruled in a civil case that Mr. Eastman had most likely conspired with Mr. Trump to obstruct Congress and defraud the United States by helping to devise and promote the alternate elector scheme, and by presenting plans to Mr. Pence suggesting that he could exercise his discretion over which slates of electors to accept or reject at the Jan. 6 congressional certification of votes," The Times reported. "The scheme, which involved holding meetings and drafting emails and memos, was 'a coup in search of a legal theory,' wrote the judge, David O. Carter of the Central District of California."