Trump en route to Washington, DC, for federal arraignment
The historic indictment against Donald Trump in the special counsel’s probe into January 6, 2021, and efforts to overturn the 2020 election says that he “enlisted co-conspirators to assist him in his criminal efforts.”
The charging documents repeatedly reference six of these co-conspirators, but as is common practice, their identities are withheld because they have not been charged with any crimes.
CNN, however, can identify five of the six co-conspirators based on quotes in the indictment and other context.
Co-Conspirator 1 is former Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani: Among other things, the indictment quotes from a voicemail that Co-Conspirator 1 left “for a United States Senator” on January 6, 2021. The quotes in the indictment match quotes from Giuliani’s call intended for GOP Sen. Tommy Tuberville, as reported by CNN and other outlets. Ted Goodman, a political adviser to Giuliani, said in a statement that the indictment “eviscerates the First Amendment.”
Co-Conspirator 2 is former Trump lawyer John Eastman: Among other things, the indictment says Co-Conspirator 2 “circulated a two-page memorandum” with a plan for Vice President Mike Pence to overturn the 2020 election while presiding over the Electoral College certification on January 6, 2021. The indictment quotes from the memo, and those quotes match a two-page memo that Eastman wrote, as reported and published by CNN.
Eastman’s attorney Charles Burnham said the indictment “relies on a misleading presentation of the record,” and that his client would decline a plea deal if offered one.
Co-Conspirator 3 is former Trump lawyer Sidney Powell: The indictment says Co-Conspirator 3 “filed a lawsuit against the Governor of Georgia” on November 25, 2020, alleging “massive election fraud” and that the lawsuit was “dismissed” on December 7, 2020. These dates and quotations match the federal lawsuit that Powell filed against Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp. An attorney for Powell declined to comment.
Co-Conspirator 4 is former Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark: The indictment identifies Co-Conspirator 4 as “a Justice Department official.” The indictment also quotes an email that a top Justice Department official sent to Clark, rebutting Clark’s attempts to use the department to overturn the election. The quotes in that email directly match quotes in an email sent to Clark, according to a Senate report about how Trump tried to weaponize the Justice Department in 2020. CNN has reached out to an attorney for Clark.
Co-Conspirator 5 is pro-Trump lawyer Kenneth Chesebro: Among other things, the indictment references an “email memorandum” that Co-Conspirator 5 “sent” to Giuliani on December 13, 2020, about the fake electors plot. The email sender, recipient, date, and content are a direct match for an email that Chesebro sent to Giuliani, according to a copy of the email made public by the House select committee that investigated January 6. CNN has reached out to an attorney for Chesebro.
The identity of Co-Conspirator 6 is unclear: The indictment says they are “a political consultant who helped implement a plan to submit fraudulent slates of presidential electors to obstruct the certification proceeding.” The indictment also further ties this person to the fake elector slate in Pennsylvania.