3 Trump allies charged in Wisconsin fake elector scheme

The attorney general of Wisconsin announced charges Tuesday against three allies of former President Donald Trump, accusing them of participating in the effort to push through a slate of fake electors to help keep Trump in power in 2020.

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Those named in the indictment include attorney Kenneth Chesebro, who earlier pleaded guilty to election-related charges in Georgia. Michael Roman, a political aide also faces charges in Georgia who was Trump’s director of Election Day operations, and former Trump attorney James Troupis were also charged.

The three are accused of being “part of a conspiracy to present a certificate of purported electoral votes from individuals who were not Wisconsin’s duly appointed electors,” Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul said.

In November 2020, Biden won Wisconsin’s 10 electors after he claimed 1.63 million votes to Trump’s 1.61 million. The results spurred recounts and a subsequent court challenge from Trump, with Troupis and Chesebro representing the campaign.

Authorities said that after the election loss, Chesebro, Troupis and Roman organized to have 10 fake electors gather at the state capitol on Dec. 14, 2020, and cast votes for Trump and his running mate, then-Vice President Mike Pence. The fake electors later said that they believed their votes were to be used as a contingency in case a court later found that Trump truly won the state.

In December, the false electors settled a lawsuit filed by the legitimate electors and acknowledged that their actions had been part of an attempt to overturn the election results, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Chesebro, Troupis and Roman face felony charges of conspiring to commit the crime “of uttering as genuine a forged writing … namely a ‘Certificate of the Votes of the 2020 Electors from Wisconsin’, knowing it to have been thus falsely made or altered,” Mary Van Schoyck, a special agent for the Wisconsin Department of Justice’s Division of Criminal Investigation wrote in a criminal complaint shared Tuesday.

If they are convicted, they could face a maximum sentence of six years in prison, officials said.

The charges come as Chesebro works with investigators in Wisconsin and other states examining the fake electors schemes, CNN reported. His attorneys previously told the news station that they believed his cooperation would keep prosecutors from pursuing charges against him.

Several other states have also filed charges against Trump allies in connection with the 2020 election, including prosecutors in Georgia and Arizona.

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