May 21, 2024 - Politics

Giuliani, other Trump allies plead not guilty in Arizona fake electors case

Rudy Giuliani speaks to members of the media  on January 21, 2024 in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Rudy Giuliani in Manchester, New Hampshire, in January. Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

Eleven defendants in Arizona's fake electors case pleaded not guilty Tuesday morning — including a combative Rudy Giuliani, who was ordered to post a $10,000 bond due to the weeks of trouble the Attorney General's Office had in serving him with a summons.

The big picture: The case, one of five in state and federal courts over alleged attempts to reverse former President Trump's defeat in his 2020 re-election bid, is scheduled to go to trial in October.

Defendants Michael Ward, left, and Kelli Ward stand with their attorney Bradley Miller, in Maricopa
Defendants Michael Ward, left, and Kelli Ward stand with their attorney Bradley Miller, in Maricopa County Superior Court as they pleaded not guilty Tuesday in the Arizona fake electors case. Pool photo: Rob Schumacher/Arizona Republic
  • But Assistant Attorney General Nicholas Klingerman told reporters after the hearing that the trial date could get pushed out.
  • "There's many motions to litigate, I suspect," he said. "So it may be some time."

Catch up quick: A grand jury indicted 18 people last month on charges of forgery, conspiracy and fraudulent schemes or artifices in connection with an alleged attempt to overturn the results of the presidential election in Arizona.

  • That includes 11 electors who cast votes for the Republican ticket, falsely claiming that Trump and Vice President Mike Pence won Arizona.

Driving the news: Republican electors Tyler Bowyer, Nancy Cottle, Anthony Kern, Robert Montgomery, Samuel Moorhead, Loraine Pellegrino, Greg Safsten, Kelli Ward and Michael Ward, along with Giuliani and former Trump attorney Christina Bobb, pleaded not guilty at Tuesday's arraignment.

Zoom in: The Attorney General's Office served Giuliani last Friday, far later than the other 17 defendants because its agents were unable to reach him in New York.

  • Klingerman told the court that Giuliani's doorman had been instructed not to let anyone up to his 10th-floor penthouse and that Giuliani didn't respond to multiple messages or reach out to the Attorney General's Office to cooperate.
  • Giuliani spoke about the indictment on podcasts, television and X, making public statements that Klingerman characterized after the hearing as "quite frankly mocking the justice system in Arizona."

The other side: Giuliani, who attended the hearing remotely, said he wasn't hiding from anyone and that he publicly revealed his whereabouts repeatedly in the weeks after the indictment.

  • He restricts access to his apartment because he still receives death threats, Giuliani said, and he claimed he was the target of an assassination plot by the Iranian government four years ago.
  • Giuliani noted that he hadn't missed any court appearances from his indictment in Georgia, nor for any lawsuits that had been filed against him.
  • "I do consider this indictment a complete embarrassment to the American legal system, but I've shown no tendency not to comply," he said. "I show up at every court appearance."

Court commissioner Shellie Smith, who imposed the $10,000 bond, warned  Giuliani at one point that she would mute him if he didn't stop talking.

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