In a significant development, Bernie Kerik, the former New York police commissioner and close ally of Rudy Giuliani and Donald Trump, has handed over thousands of documents, totalling around 600MB of pdfs, to the special counsel Jack Smith.
Smith’s investigation is focused on Trump’s role in the events of the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol.
Kerik, who was pardoned by Donald Trump in early 2020 for crimes including tax fraud and lying to investigators, had previously resisted providing documents to investigators citing privilege issues. However, the documents were cleared for release to Smith by Trump’s 2024 campaign.
Trump is already facing 71 criminal charges, including 34 in New York related to hush money payments to Stormy Daniels and 37 in the federal investigation of his retention of classified records, also overseen by Smith.
Kerik’s Attorney, Timothy Parlatore, told CNN on Monday: “I have shared all of these documents, approximately 600MB, mostly pdfs, with the special counsel and look forward to sitting down with them in about two weeks to discuss”.
It comes just days after a landmark development by the federal investigation into Trump’s alleged efforts to overturn the 2020 election results, in which the ex-president’s legal team have received a target letter suggesting he could be charged under a law dating back to the Civil War era.
The ex-NYPD boss, who is scheduled to be interviewed by Smith next month, has long claimed the documents requested by the probe ought to be privileged. Analysts say formal charges against Trump in the election fraud case could be announced as early as next week. The trial might proceed more swiftly than the classified documents case, as pre-trial proceedings would not be impeded by national security concerns.
Giuliani and Kerik played key roles in shaping Trump’s legal and political strategies during his presidency. Giuliani served as Trump’s personal attorney, while Kerik was a vocal supporter and ally of the former president.
In February 2020, Donald Trump granted a pardon to Kerik for his previous convictions, which included tax fraud and lying to investigators- erasing Kerik’s criminal record.
Kerik collaborated closely with Giuliani’s efforts to try and overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. The pair were part of the legal team that promoted claims of election fraud and irregularities in an effort to challenge Biden’s victory.
Trump Still Dominates the GOP
Still, mere weeks from the first presidential debate, Trump’s lead in opinion polls has widened. Last week Reuters reported that his latest Presidential campaign was backed by 47 percent of Republicans. This is over double the 19 per cent currently backing Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for his Party’s nomination.
Georgia Gilholy is a journalist based in the United Kingdom who has been published in Newsweek, The Times of Israel, and the Spectator. Gilholy writes about international politics, culture, and education.