21.04.2024

Rudy Giuliani is furious about being charged with same mob law he claims he pioneered

Rudy Giuliani is furious that Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has charged him using the same mob law he has long taken credit for pioneering.

The former New York City mayor and former Donald Trump attorney flew into a rage in an appearance on right-wing network Newsmax on Tuesday night as he claimed that the Georgia DA’s use of the racketeering law was “sloppy” and that “I was the first one to use it in white-collar cases”.

“There’s probably no one that knows it better than I do,” he insisted.

Newsmax host Eric Bolling pandered to Mr Giuliani’s possessiveness of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) statute – a law typically used to prosecute mob bosses, Mafia figures and other organised crime groups – saying that he “famously used RICO to put away some of the most dangerous criminals the world has ever seen”.

He listed off some of the big names that Mr Giuliani put away using the statute, including notorious mobsters “Fat Tony Salerno from the Genovese crime family, Tony Ducks, Lucchese family, Carmine ‘Junior’ Persico, Colombos, Paul Castellano, the boss of the powerful Gambinos”.

When he then asked Mr Giuliani “why the hell is Fani Willis trying to charge you with racketeering?”, the man once known as “America’s Mayor” before his spectacular fall from grace proceeded to unleash on the district attorney.

“Because she’s a politician and not a lawyer. Not an honest, honorable lawyer,” he fumed.

“This is a ridiculous application of the racketeering statute. There’s probably no one that knows it better than I do.

“Probably some that know it as well. I was the first one to use it in white-collar cases, but in major cases like the Boesky case and the Milken case. This is not meant for election disputes. I mean, this is ridiculous what she’s doing.”

Mr Giuliani went on to attack the competence of DA Willis and claimed that he would have fired her had she worked for him,

“Also, I don’t know if she realises it because she seems like a pretty incompetent, sloppy prosecutor. I mean what she did yesterday with that indictment is inexcusable. If she worked for me, I would’ve fired her,” he said.

Mr Giuliani famously used the RICO statute to try to take down the New York City mafia while working as a US attorney in the 1980s.

It’s clearly a source of pride for the former New York City mayor.

In the bio on his “freedom fund” page – which seeks donations to help him in his “battles for his freedom and justice” – he boasts that he “pioneered the use of the RICO statute to take massive businesses away from not only the Mafia but other organized crime and illegal drug groups, crooked Wall Street con men, corrupt politicians from Congresspeople to many city, state and federal officials”.

On Monday, this same statute was used to hit Mr Giuliani and his alleged co-conspirators with a sweeping 41-count indictment, over their efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election in Georgia.

Charged under Georgia’s RICO statute, the 19 defendants are accused of running a criminal enterprise with the goal of ensuring that Mr Trump remained in power at all costs.

The RICO statute is a Richard Nixon-era racketeering law originally passed to prosecute organised crime groups and mafia crime syndicates.

In brief, it allows prosecutors to bring different charges against multiple individuals who are all engaging in criminal activity for the purpose of a criminal end goal.

All 19 of the defendants were charged with violating Georgia’s RICO statute.

The indictment accuses Mr Trump and his allies of orchestrating and running a criminal enterprise in Fulton County, Georgia, and elsewhere, to “accomplish the illegal goal of allowing Donald J. Trump to seize the presidential term of office, beginning on January 20, 2021”.

“This criminal organization constituted an enterprise as that term is defined in O.C.G.A. § l6-14-3(3), that is, a group of individuals associated in fact. The Defendants and other members and associates of the enterprise had connections and relationships with one another and with the enterprise,” it reads.

The criminal organisation’s members and associates “engaged in various related criminal activities including, but not limited to, false statements and writings, impersonating a public officer, forgery, filing false documents, influencing witnesses, computer theft, computer trespass, computer invasion of privacy, conspiracy to defraud the state, acts involving theft, and perjury”.

Mr Giuliani was hit with 13 charges over the criminal enterprise – the most of all codefendants other than Mr Trump who also faces 13 charges.

The other co-defendants are: former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, “Kraken” lawyer Sidney Powell, attorneys John Eastman, Kenneth Cheseboro, Jenna Ellis, Ray Smith III, and Robert Cheeley, former US Department of Justice official Jeffrey Clark, former Trump campaign official Michael Roman, former state senator and the former chair of the Georgia Republican Party David Schafer, Georgia state senator Shawn Still, Lutheran pastor Stephen Lee, mixed martial artist Harrison Floyd, Kanye West’s former PR Trevian Kutti, former head of the Republican Party in Coffee County Cathleen Latham, Atlanta-area bail bondsman Scott Hall, and former election supervisor of Coffee County Misty Hampton.

DA Willis has spent more than two years investigating efforts by Mr Trump and his allies to overturn the 2020 presidential election result in the crucial swing state.

The investigation came following the release of a 2 January 2021 phone call Mr Trump made to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger where he told him to “find” enough votes to change the outcome of the election in the state.

“All I want to do is this: I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have,” Mr Trump is heard saying in the leaked phone call. “Because we won the state.”

Mr Biden won the state by less than 12,000 votes.

The investigation then expanded from that phone call to include a scheme whereby a group of fake Republican electors planned to falsely certify the results in Mr Trump’s favour instead of Mr Biden’s. The plot failed and the fake electors have since reached immunity deals with DA Willis’ office.

Ms Willis said she would like to try the defendants altogether and within the next six months.

In total, the former president is now facing 91 charges from four separate criminal cases.

On 1 August, he was hit with a federal indictment charging him with four counts over his efforts to overturn the 2020 election and the events leading up to the January 6 Capitol riot, following an investigation led by special counsel Jack Smith’s office.

This came after Mr Smith’s office charged Mr Trump in a separate indictment over his alleged mishandling of classified documents on leaving office.

Back in April, Mr Trump was charged for the first time with New York state charges following an investigation into hush money payments made prior to the 2016 election.

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