Sidney Powell pleads guilty in Georgia election interference case

October 20, 2023

Trump-aligned attorney Sidney Powell pleaded guilty to six misdemeanor counts in the Georgia 2020 election interference case on Thursday, October 19, after reaching a plea agreement with prosecutors. She now becomes the second defendant in the sweeping case to do so, reports The Hill.

Powell appeared before Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee to enter her plea, just days before her trial is scheduled to begin next week.

“How do you plead to the six counts of conspiracy to commit intentional interference with performance of election duties?” asked Daysha Young, a Fulton County prosecutor.

“Guilty,” Powell said.

McAfee accepted Powell’s plea and said that she cannot withdraw it. She was sentenced to six years of probation, a $6,000 fine, and $2,700 restitution. She will also be required to “testify truthfully” in future proceedings and must turn over any documents requested by the district attorney’s office.

Powell was also required to submit a “letter of apology” to Georgia residents, which her lawyer indicated she had already done.

Powell is the second of 19 co-defendants in the case to plead guilty. The other 17, including Trump, have denied any wrongdoing.

Scott Hall, a bail bondsman who was also charged, pleaded guilty late last month to five counts of the same charge Powell did.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis (D) indicted Powell on seven charges in August, accusing her and the others of violating Georgia’s Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act statute by entering a months-long conspiracy to try to keep Trump in power following the 2020 election.

Powell’s other charges in the case relate to her alleged participation in an election machine breach at an elections office in Coffee County. Powell’s attorneys previously insisted she had no role in the Coffee County breach.

Young said Thursday that, if the case had gone to trial, the state would have proven Powell entered a conspiracy to “intervene with the performance of election duties” of Misty Hampton, a co-defendant and the elections director for Coffee County.

“The purpose of the conspiracy was to use Misty Hampton’s position to unlawfully access secure elections machines in Coffee County, Georgia,” Young said.

Powell was set to go to trial beginning next week alongside fellow Trump-aligned attorney Kenneth Chesebro. Both invoked their speedy trial rights—enabling their cases to move along a faster timeline than the other 17, who will be tried at a later date.

Her decision to plead guilty means Chesebro will proceed to trial alone, meeting his previously sought goal of severing his trial from Powell and all other defendants.

The guilty plea came in the wake of McAfee denying Powell’s various attempts to toss the indictment ahead of trial. The first potential trial jurors are set to be summoned to the courthouse on Friday.

Once a lawyer for Trump’s campaign, Powell became a powerful surrogate for the former president’s false claims of election fraud. She earned the nickname, “Kraken,” after issuing fiery speeches comparing the mythological creature to the alleged fraud.

Research contact: @thehill