According to legal experts who have pored over the final report from the House select committee investigating the Jan 6 riot that forced lawmakers from both sides of the aisle to flee for their lives, the Department of Justice and, in particular, special counsel Jack Smith, have been handed a powerful document that provides a detailed roadmap that should lead to criminal indictments.
The report notes that Donald Trump is the centerpiece of the 800-page report that one legal scholar claimed went far "beyond a call for heads to roll."
As former DoJ inspector general Michael Bromwich explained, "“The January 6 committee’s final hearing and lengthy executive summary make out a powerful case to support its criminal referrals as to Trump, attorney John Eastman, and unnamed others.”
Bromwich added, "Although the referrals carry no legal weight, they provide an unusual preview of potential charges that may well be effective in swaying public opinion.”
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Former prosecutor Daniel Richman applauded how comprehensive the report was, explaining, "Although the committee’s hearings gave a good preview of the criminal liability theories it has now laid out in its summary, the new [executive summary] document does an extraordinary job of pulling together the evidentiary materials the committee assembled,” before adding, "The committee’s presentation goes far beyond a call for heads to roll, and amounts to a detailed prosecution memo that the DoJ will have to reckon with.”
Frequent MSNBC legal analyst Barbara McQuade added, "Although the committee’s referral to the justice department is not binding in any way, and the DoJ will make its own independent assessment of whether charges are appropriate, the most important parts of the report are the facts it documents.”
"That factual gold mine has caught the eye of special counsel Jack Smith, who attorney general Merrick Garland tapped last month to oversee the DoJ’s sprawling criminal inquiries into the January 6 insurrection," wrote the Guardian's Peter Stone, before adding, "On the broader legal challenges facing the DoJ, ex-prosecutors say the panel’s work should goad the department to work diligently to investigate and charge Trump and others the panel has referred for prosecution."
Former US attorney Michael Moore added to that by stating, "The committee report gives the special counsel not only the benefit of knowing what certain witnesses will say, it also lets him know what other witnesses won’t say. That type of intel gives him the ability to put together a stronger case with fewer surprises. More information is never a bad thing to a good lawyer.”
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