Giuliani named a target of Fulton investigation, attorney says

Rudy Giuliani, the personal attorney to former President Donald Trump, was informed by Fulton County prosecutors on Monday that he is a target of the ongoing criminal investigation into Georgia’s 2020 elections, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has learned.

Attorney Bill Thomas, who is representing Giuliani in Atlanta, was called around midday on Monday by a special prosecutor in the Fulton DA’s office and told his client could be indicted, according to Robert J. Costello, Giuliani’s New York-based lawyer.

The development was first reported by The New York Times.

Giuliani’s lawyers said they have long asked about whether their client is a target, including at a hearing before a Fulton judge last week. Costello said they didn’t get an answer until today.

“We’ve asked that question numerous times,” he said. “They’ve consistently refused to answer it.”

Fulton Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney last week ordered Giuliani to honor his subpoena and testify before the 23-person special grand jury aiding in the DA’s investigation on Wednesday. Giuliani had been seeking to delay his testimony as he recovers from a recent heart stent operation.

Costello said his client plans to be in Atlanta on Wednesday and “will follow his ethical obligations with regard to privileges” such as citing attorney-client privilege when necessary. Costello would not say whether Giuliani plans to plead the 5th Amendment to avoid self-incrimination.

Thomas, Giuliani’s Atlanta attorney, did not respond to requests for comment. Neither did the DA’s office.

The grand jury appears to be interested in several Georgia events involving Giuliani in late 2020.

It’s subpoenaed witnesses who heard Giuliani’s falsehood-filled testimony before two Georgia legislative committees in Dec. 2020. During those hearings, the former New York City mayor screened selectively edited surveillance footage of vote counting at Atlanta’s State Farm Arena, which he called a “powerful smoking gun” for widespread fraud.

Giuliani’s claims were quickly debunked by the Georgia Secretary of State’s office, but he continued to share the video and doubled down on his comments in the weeks after. He was later suspended from practicing law in New York, in part because of his testimony in Georgia.

Jurors are seemingly interested in a call that Giuliani placed to Georgia House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, in late 2020. A major focus has also become the appointment of the slate of “alternate” Trump electors, which Giuliani reportedly helped quarterback for the Trump campaign.

The 16 Georgia Republicans who served as those Trump electors were sent letters last month alerting them that they were also investigation targets.

One of those electors, GOP lieutenant governor nominee Burt Jones, is no longer allowed to be considered a target — or even investigated — by the Fulton DA Fani Willis after McBurney ruled that the veteran prosecutor had a conflict of interest. He cited a fundraiser that Willis hosted earlier this summer for Jones’ Democratic opponent.

The Giuliani news came the same day that a federal judge denied an attempt from U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham to quash his subpoena from the same Fulton grand jury.

Staff writer Bill Rankin contributed to this article.