Prosecutors investigating former U.S President, Donald Trump have asked a witness to prepare to testify before the grand jury.
Gatekeepers News had on Wednesday reported that district attorney in Manhattan has convened a grand jury to hear evidence in the immediate past United States President, Donald Trump’s criminal probe.
Trump, his company and its executives are being investigated by Manhattan district attorney’s office, led by Cyrus Vance Jr., for “possibly extensive and protracted criminal conduct.”
Gatekeepers News gathered that at least one witness has been told to prepare to give evidence before a grand jury.
There are reports that grand jury Vance’s office has convened is a special grand jury which is typically used to hear complex, long-term fraud and corruption cases. A special grand jury sits longer than a standard grand jury.
“It’s very rare for there to be a special grand jury empanelled in Manhattan supreme court and for that jury not to consider charges at some point,” said Daniel Alonso, a former prosecutor who was chief assistant district attorney in the Manhattan district attorney’s office under Vance.
Adam S. Kaufmann, who served as chief of the office’s investigative division, said that “it really suggests they’ve reached a point in their investigation where the district attorney believes there’s evidence of a crime. You don’t empanel a special grand jury unless you think you have a viable case.”
In so doing, prosecutors will call witnesses themselves to testify to the grand jury, rather than asking an FBI agent or another authority working on the case to summarize the evidence. Calling all of the witnesses in a sprawling case often takes much longer than a standard grand jury allows.
The lengthier time frame also provides the opportunity to compel witness testimony, a step Alonso said he would “absolutely expect” in a matter like the Trump investigation, in part because it forces witnesses to speak without being able to compare their version of events to anyone else’s.
“You want to lock in their testimony at a time where they don’t know what the other evidence is,” he said.
Vance is stepping down at the end of the year, which implies that he has limited time to bring charges.
Trump, who left office in January, has denied any wrongdoing as he described the grand jury seating as “a continuation of the greatest witch hunt in American history,” on Tuesday evening.
“This is purely political, and an affront to the almost 75 million voters who supported me in the presidential election, and it’s being driven by highly partisan Democrat prosecutors,” Trump said.
“Our country is broken, our elections are rigged, corrupt, and stolen, our prosecutors are politicized, and I will just have to keep on fighting like I have been for the last five years.”