The revelation that individuals connected to Donald Trump had reached out to pressure witnesses in the Jan. 6 investigation poses a legal risk to the former president, according to former prosecutors.
The House select committee revealed two messages received by witnesses in the investigation, including former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson, that indicated Trump was following their testimony and expecting loyalty, and former prosecutor Michael Moore told CNN how that posed a risk of legal jeopardy.
"We're not at a prosecution, we're in a congressional inquiry," said Moore, the former U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia. "Interestingly enough, the issue of witness tampering may be one of the biggest threats to Tump yet. That's because it's an offense that happened after he was a sitting president, and so it sort of removes some of the argument we're going to hear about whether or not he had privilege, whether or not a president can be charged with a crime and those things. Whether or not he was a candidate at the time."
"They were talking about it and the communication is going on now," he added. "So that, in and of itself, is a separate federal offense [from anything that happened on Jan. 6, 2021], so we don't need to get caught up into whether or not we go after somebody on a whim and speculation and this type of thing, and i hope they have more evidence and direct links to him as they go forward if they decide to charge him, but you have here a clear indication that it's coming from his inner circle."
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