2021-02-14 16:33:05 UTC
*Sources say Trump is worried about the possibility of criminal charges in riot
*He was acquitted in a Senate trial on Friday in a vote largely along party
*But top Senate Republican Mitch McConnell denounced Trump after trial
*He strongly suggested that the legal system should address Trump's role
*Trump has remained largely silent since leaving office, but hinted at a
*He separately faces criminal probes from prosecutors in Georgia and New York
Donald Trump has privately shared concerns that he could be criminally
prosecuted over his role in the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, according to
a new report.
'He's worried about it,' one adviser close to Trump told CNN, saying that Trump
had remained mostly silent since leaving the White House due to fears of
potential criminal liability.
After the Senate voted 57-43 to acquit Trump of incitement to insurrection on
Saturday, even several top Republicans who voted to acquit suggested that
criminal charges could be warranted.
'The ultimate accountability is through our criminal justice system where
political passions are checked,' said Senator Thom Tillis, a North Carolina
Republican who voted not guilty.
'No president is above the law or immune from criminal prosecution, and that
includes former president Trump,' Tillis added.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who also voted to acquit, unloaded on
Trump in a harsh diatribe following the trial, saying the former president was
'practically and morally responsible' for the events of January 6.
He also noted that though Trump is now out of office, he remains subject to the
country's criminal and civil laws.
'Impeachment was never meant to be the final forum for American justice. We
have a criminal justice system in this country. We have civil litigation. And
former Presidents are not immune from being held accountable by either one,'
'He didn't get away with anything yet,' said McConnell, who turns 79 next
Saturday and has led the Senate GOP since 2007.
Federal investigators are looking at all aspects of the Capitol attack, and have
already arrested more than 200 rioters on a range of charges.
When acting US Attorney Michael Sherwin was asked directly in January if Trump's
role was under investigation, he responded: 'We're looking at all actors here
and anyone that had a role and, if the evidence fits the elements of the crime,
they're going to be charged.'
Separate from the Capitol attack, Trump faces legal threats on a number of
fronts after losing the many protections afforded by the presidency.
In Georgia, prosecutors are investigating whether Trump tried to illegally
influence election results when he asked a state official to "find" one more
vote than he needed to win.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is investigating Trump after a
January 2 telephone call he made pressuring Secretary of State Brad
Raffensperger to overturn the state's election results based on unfounded voter
The investigation is the second known state criminal probe of Trump, whose tax
and business affairs are under investigation in New York.
Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance Jr's probe into the Trump Organization for
potential tax, bank and insurance fraud is believed to be in an advanced stage.
A U.S. Supreme Court decision is expected soon on whether Vance can obtain eight
years of Trump's tax records and other financial information from accounting