Sidney Powell is shown in a police booking mugshot released by the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office, Atlanta, Aug. 23, 2023.
Fulton County Sheriff’s Office | via Reuters
Right-wing attorney Sidney Powell pleaded guilty Thursday to criminal charges stemming from the Georgia election interference case against former President Donald Trump and more than a dozen other defendants.
Powell’s plea agreement with prosecutors, the second in the case so far, came one day before jury selection in her trial was set to begin.
The sudden flip by Powell, who spread wild voter fraud conspiracies after Trump lost the 2020 election and filed lawsuits attempting to reverse that outcome, could ramp up pressure on her co-defendants to cut their own plea deals.
Powell, 68, pleaded guilty in Fulton County Superior Court to six misdemeanor counts of conspiracy to commit intentional interference with performance of election duties, a court filing shows.
In this frame grab from video, Sidney Powell, former attorney for former President Donald Trump, attends a hearing with her attorney Brian Rafferty before Judge Scott McAfee on October 19, 2023 at the Fulton County Courthouse in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
Fulton County Court | Reuters
She will face six years of probation, a $6,000 fine and $2,700 in restitution to Georgia as part of the deal negotiated with prosecutors, according to remarks in a court hearing Thursday morning.
A first-time offender, Powell will not face jail time.
She will also be required to write an apology letter to the state of Georgia and its citizens.
Powell is the second of 19 co-defendants in the case to plead guilty. The first, bail bondsman Scott Hall, pleaded guilty in September to five misdemeanor conspiracy charges.
Like Hall, Powell agreed to testify truthfully in upcoming trials involving other co-defendants in the case, including Trump.
Powell initially faced seven felony charges, including racketeering and conspiracy to commit election fraud, in the indictment alleging a sprawling effort to overturn Trump’s loss to President Joe Biden in Georgia’s 2020 contest.
She was accused of being involved in a scheme to unlawfully breach election equipment in Coffee County, Georgia, and tamper with voting machines.
She was also at the White House for a Dec. 18, 2020, meeting where participants discussed election-flipping strategies, such as seizing voting machines or appointing Powell as special counsel to “investigate allegations of voter fraud in Georgia and elsewhere,” the indictment says.
Trump and his former lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, another co-defendant, were also at the meeting, according to the indictment.
Powell and another co-defendant, attorney Kenneth Chesebro, were set to become the first defendants to head to trial in Atlanta District Attorney Fani Willis’ case.
Judge Scott McAfee had granted Powell and Chesebro their demands for speedy trials, though he denied their requests to keep those trials separated from each other.
A trial date has not yet been set for Trump, who faces 13 criminal counts in Willis’ case, and the other co-defendants who have pleaded not guilty.
Don’t miss these CNBC PRO stories: