Oath Keepers Tell Jan 6th Committee About Communicating With Trump Allies to Overturn 2020 Election

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Top leaders in the Oath Keepers have been turning over phones and digital files and sitting for interviews with the FBI and detailing how they worked to benefit Donald Trump’s campaign. Members of the far-right extremist citizens’ militia group communicated with others in the former President’s orbit, according to court records and multiple sources familiar with the federal investigation.

Investigators also have learned about encrypted messages shared via Signal leading up to January 6th in which the Oath Keepers were messaging high-profile, right-wing political organizers, according to four people familiar with its existence who spoke to CNN under the condition of anonymity. The Justice Department recently provided records of the chat to defense attorneys in the sedition case, they told CNN.

[Photo by William Campbell/Corbis via Getty Images]

In court last week, prosecutors also disclosed how the Oath Keepers’ leader Stewart Rhodes called an unnamed person on speakerphone from a hotel suite on the evening of January 6th, asking to speak to Trump directly. When his request was denied, Rhodes urged the still-unknown person (who many suspect was Roger Stone) to tell Trump to call upon groups like the Oath Keepers to “forcefully oppose the transfer of power.”

Rhodes himself met with the FBI multiple times before his arrest in January and handed over his electronics, his lawyers say. Rhodes has pleaded not guilty and is set to go to trial in July.

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Prosecutors have said they expect to bring more charges against people affiliated with extremist groups. Grand jury investigators are talking to a wide range of people, including organizers of pro-Trump rallies that preceded the Capitol attack, while seeking information about attempts to block the certification of President Joe Biden’s electoral win.

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