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Jeffrey Clark loses his bid to move Georgia case to federal court

The ex-DOJ lawyer wanted to move his state racketeering prosecution in Georgia to federal court. A federal judge just said no.

By

Trump-era Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark just lost his attempt to move his state racketeering prosecution in Georgia to federal court.

U.S. District Judge Steve Jones made the ruling Friday. Unlike Clark’s co-defendant Mark Meadows?—?whose removal claim also was rejected by Jones (Meadows is appealing)?—?Clark didn’t even show up in court to testify at his removal hearing.

At the Sept. 18 hearing, Clark’s lawyer argued that his client was acting under the direction of then-President Donald Trump when Clark pushed top Justice Department officials to sign and send a letter he wrote to Georgia officials with false claims of fraud in the 2020 presidential election.

“Not only has Clark failed to provide any (let alone sufficient) evidence that the President delegated him this authority,” Jones wrote in his order Friday, “but the evidence shows that any such delegation of the action alleged (i.e., the contents in the letter drafted) would have been outside the scope of DOJ more broadly.”

Jones noted that the bar for removal “is indeed low,” but he went on to explain that “the removing party still bears a burden to show a jurisdictional basis for the removal.” Clark, the judge wrote, “has failed to offer sufficient evidence that the acts alleged in the Indictment related to the color of his office.”

Clark is charged along with Trump and 17 other co-defendants in Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis’ sprawling racketeering indictment stemming from her office’s investigation into possible 2020 election interference.

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