Attorney Sidney Powell has pleaded guilty to reduced charges in the case brought by Georgia prosecutors alleging efforts by associates around former President Trump to overturn the results of the 2020 election.
Powell was charged with violating the state’s anti-racketeering law alongside Trump and 17 others and reached a plea deal with prosecutors the day before jury selection in her trial was set to begin.
As part of the deal, Powell pleaded guilty to six misdemeanor counts of conspiracy to commit election interference.
She also agreed to serve six years of probation, pay a $6,000 fine and $2,700 in restitution to the State of Georgia, submit an apology letter to Georgia residents, and testify in future proceedings.
Powell, 68, was one of Trump’s attorneys after the 2020 election, and was hit in the initial 98-page indictment with charges related to election interference and accessing state voting machines, including racketeering, conspiracy to commit election fraud, conspiracy to commit computer theft, trespassing and invasion of privacy, and conspiracy to defraud the state.
Steve Sadow, Trump’s lead attorney in the Fulton County case, says that any testimony that Powell provides will actually aid in Trump’s defense.
“Assuming truthful testimony in the Fulton County case, it will be favorable to my overall defense strategy,” Sadow said.
Other experts don’t believe the plea deal will ultimately benefit Trump.
“This is a really big breakthrough for the prosecutors,” CNN senior legal analyst and former federal prosecutor Elie Honig said. “And it’s so important to understand there is no such thing as halfway cooperation. If you’re a prosecutor, you would not enter into this deal with Sidney Powell unless you had been thoroughly convinced that A, she is telling the truth, [and] B, she is going to be able to testify for you credibly in the way that you can put in front of a jury and justify and see she is not going to be splitting hairs.”
Anthony Michael Kreis, a law professor at Georgia State, says that Powell has a great plea deal and should be very pleased: “It’s a great outcome especially if you’re engaged in what most people would say are obvious felonies.”
Powell became popular in 2020 after vowing to “release the Kraken,” a reference to a mythical sea monster, as evidence proving election fraud was released.
Prosecutors allege that Powell conspired with others to access election equipment without authorization and hired a forensic data analysis company to send a team to Coffee County to copy data from voting machines.
Trial dates have not yet been set for the remaining 16 defendants but are expected next year.