Former Trump campaign lawyer Jenna Ellis He pleaded guilty Tuesday in the Georgia election subversion case and will cooperate with Fulton County prosecutors — his third guilty plea in the past week.
At an unscheduled hearing in Atlanta, Ellis pleaded guilty to one count of aiding and abetting false statements, a felony stemming from election lies Ellis and other Donald Trump lawyers sold to Georgia lawmakers in December 2020.
She was sentenced to five years of probation and ordered to pay $5,000 in restitution.
Ellis gave a tearful statement to the judge Tuesday as he pleaded guilty and denied involvement in Trump’s unprecedented attempts to overturn the 2020 election.
“If I had known then what I know now, I would have refused to represent Donald Trump in these post-election challenges. I remember this experience with deep remorse,” Ellis said, his voice breaking at times.
Development comes later consecutive guilty pleas last week in the sprawling case of former Trump campaign attorney Sidney Powell and Kenneth Chesebro, who helped engineer the fake electors plot.
These three plea deals are a monumental step forward for Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, who filed the case in August and is preparing for trials against Trump, his former attorney Rudy Giuliani, his chief of staff Mark Meadows and other prominent figures. (All have pleaded not guilty).
Ellis, Chesebro and Powell agreed to testify on behalf of the prosecution in future trials. By changing their minds, these former Trump insiders are now on their way to becoming big Trump haters. They are all lawyers and can shed light on what happened behind the scenes in 2020.
Prosecutors originally accused 19 people in the expanding case. So far, four have pleaded guilty.
In a tearful apology to the court, Ellis spoke of his personal “failures” and expressed “deep remorse” while denying his involvement in Trump’s legal efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election.
“As an attorney who is also a Christian, I take my responsibilities as an attorney very seriously and strive to be a person of strong moral and ethical character in all my dealings,” Ellis said.
But after the 2020 election, “I didn’t do my due diligence,” he said.
“I relied on others, including attorneys with many more years of experience than me, to provide me with true and reliable information…what I did not do, but should have done, your honor, was make sure that the facts that the other attorneys told me were true.” that were supposedly true were, in fact, true,” Ellis said.
Ellis’ statement implicated Giuliani in a state crime: lying to Georgia lawmakers by peddling false theories of voter fraud. This comes a week later Chesebro implicated Giuliani in the fake elector scheme that attempted to subvert the Electoral College process. Giuliani denies any wrongdoing.
According to court documents, Ellis admitted that he “intentionally aided and abetted” Giuliani and another Trump lawyer, Ray Smith, in “knowingly, intentionally and unlawfully making…false statements to members of the Georgia Senate.”
Their false statements included unfounded claims of massive voter fraud, including through mail-in votes and with thousands of supposedly illegal votes from felons, minors, and “dead people.” Both Smith and Giuliani have pleaded not guilty.
None of these allegations were true, according to multiple investigations and recounts by Georgia election officials. Trump lost the state to Joe Biden by about 12,000 votes.
In exchange for Ellis’ cooperation, prosecutors dropped their two original charges, including a violation of Georgia’s racketeering law known as RICO. Trump’s attorney, Steve Sadow, said in a statement that he believes this helps his client and noted that Ellis’ admitted criminal conduct “does not even mention President Trump.”
“For the fourth time, Fani Willis and his prosecution team have dismissed the RICO charge in exchange for a plea of probation,” Sadow said. “What that shows is that this so-called RICO case is nothing more than a bargaining chip for Prosecutor Willis.”
Following the allegation Under the agreement, Ellis, who has an active online presence, is also prohibited from posting anything on social media about the case while proceedings against any of the defendants unfold, prosecutors said.
in unrelated Disciplinary procedures in Colorado, where Ellis is a practicing attorney, Ellis admitted that many of her post-election public statements were false, including her claim that the race was “stolen” from Trump. A judge censured her and she agreed to pay $224, ending the misconduct investigation.
He has not been in Trump’s orbit in recent months and has been publicly supporting Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in the 2024 Republican presidential primary.
After the indictment, Ellis publicly complained about the lack of financial support from pro-Trump groups. She has raised more than $216,000 through an online crowdfunding website.
This story has been updated with additional news.