Trump, allies start to forge bond deals ahead of expected booking at Fulton County jail this week

Former President Donald Trump agreed to a $200,000 bond order ahead of an expected booking in Fulton County Jail this week. Stanley Dunlap/Georgia Recorder

This post was updated 8:20 p.m. August 21 to reflect the former president’s social media message that he plans to turn himself in at the Fulton County jail Thursday.

Former President Donald Trump’s attorneys agreed to a $200,000 bond and other terms of release ahead of his expected trip to Georgia this week to be booked into the Fulton County Jail.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis charged Trump and 18 co-defendants last week over an alleged conspiracy to overturn the results of the 2020 election, which Trump lost in Georgia by about 12,000 votes. Attorneys representing the others charged in connection with Willis’ probe were negotiating the terms of their release Monday.

Willis gave them until noon Friday to turn themselves in. Fulton County Sheriff Pat Labat said the former president will be treated like any other defendant, including being fingerprinted and photographed for a mugshot before being released on bond.

Trump’s legal team signed off on terms of that bond Monday, including specific rules against intimidating witnesses, including “posts on social media or reposts of posts made by another individual on social media.”

The Fulton County indictments mark the fourth time this year the former president faced criminal charges.

Trump has been accused of attempting to tamper with witnesses in other legal cases and in Georgia. Last Monday, he posted that Georgia’s former Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan “shouldn’t” testify before the Fulton County grand jury.

At least four other co-defendants reached agreements for their release Monday, according to documents released by Fulton County Superior Court. Their bond orders contain prohibitions against intimidating witnesses but do not go into the same detail as Trump’s.

Attorneys John Eastman and Kenneth Chesebro agreed to $100,000 bond orders in connection with an alleged plot to undermine the Electoral College tally of Georgia’s 2020 vote.

According to an indictment, Eastman’s role included encouraging a group of Republican fake electors to approve Trump as the winner in Georgia, filing a lawsuit against the state including statements he knew to be false and seeking to convince then-Vice President Mike Pence to reject the legitimate election results.

Chesebro is accused of providing the documents signed by Georgia’s fake electors.

Atlanta attorney Ray Smith agreed to a $50,000 bond. He is accused of falsely claiming to Georgia senators that he had proof of 130,000 illegal votes cast in 2020.

Georgia bail bondsman Scott Graham Hall agreed to a $10,000 bond. He is charged with illegally accessing voting equipment in the Coffee County Elections and Registration Department office.

Another alleged co-conspirator, former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, filed a motion Saturday to request all charges against him dropped, arguing that because he was acting as a federal official, he should be immune to state prosecution under the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution, which states that federal laws take precedence over state laws.

“The State’s prosecution of Mr. Meadows threatens the important federal interest in providing the President of the United States with close, confidential advice and assistance, firmly entrenched in federal law for nearly 100 years,” Meadows’ attorneys wrote.

Among Meadows’ alleged crimes are attempting to access a signature match audit in Cobb County and participating in Trump’s infamous phone call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in which Trump asked his fellow Republican to “find” enough votes to hand him a Georgia victory.

Trump could make his jailhouse appearance any time before the Friday deadline, but he said on social media Monday night he’ll show up Thursday.

A late-in-the-week surrender could have the extra effect of drawing attention away from the upcoming Republican presidential primary debates, scheduled for Wednesday evening in Milwaukee.

Trump announced he would not be participating, citing a large lead in the polls. A CBS News poll released Sunday found that Trump has the support of 62% of likely Republican primary voters with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in distant second place with 16%.

Georgia beef

Meanwhile, on Truth Social, the social media platform owned by the former president, Trump continued his mostly one-sided beef with Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, which started when the governor refused to take steps to alter Georgia’s election results. Kemp said he did not have legal authority to take those steps, including a push to call a special session of the GOP-controlled state Legislature to award Georgia’s 16 electoral votes to Trump despite his narrow loss.

On Thursday, Dade County Republican Sen. Colton Moore penned an open letter to Kemp calling for a special session to impeach Willis. This would be very unlikely to happen, as it would require three-fifths majorities from both the House and Senate and the support of many Democrats in the Legislature.

A Kemp spokesperson told FOX News that Moore had not provided evidence that he could drum up that much support, which the former president did not like:

“Governor Kemp of Georgia is fighting hard against the Impeachment of the crooked, incompetent, & highly partisan D.A. of Fulton County, Fani Willis, who has allowed Murder and other Violent Crime to MASSIVELY ESCALATE,” he posted Monday. “Crime in Atlanta is WORST IN NATION. She should be impeached for many reasons, not just the Witch Hunt (I did nothing wrong!). Willis should focus on out of control Murder, not “I will get TRUMP” over a Perfect Phone Call. Georgia does not deserve this GIANT MURDER WAVE!”

In a separate Truth post on Sunday, Trump speculated that a meeting between Kemp, Pence and DeSantis could have been “perhaps to discuss how they can stop the Weaponization of Georgia Law, working with the DOJ and others, against their absolutely, all time favorite President, ME. All three have been just wonderful, so loyal and nice. It’s great to have friends like this!”


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