Special counsel Jack Smith spoke to reporters on Tuesday following the latest indictment against former US President Donald Trump over attempts to overturn the 2020 elections.
Smith said an assault on the US Capitol building on January 6, 2021 was "fueled by lies" by the defendant aimed at obstructing certification of Joe Biden's election victory.
"It was fueled by lies. Lies by the defendant, targeted at obstructing a bedrock function of the US government — the nation's process of collecting, counting and certifying the results of the presidential election."
"My office will seek a speedy trial so that our evidence can be tested in court and judged by a jury of citizens," he added.
Smith praised law enforcement who defended the US Capitol during the January 6, 2021 riot.
"They are patriots and they are the very best of us," he said. "They did not just defend a building or the people sheltering in it, they put their lives on the line to defend who we are as a country and as a people."
Smith’s comment came after Trump was charged by the Department of Justice with four counts: A conspiracy to defraud the United States "by using dishonesty, fraud and deceit to obstruct the nation’s process of collecting, counting, and certifying the results of the presidential election"; a conspiracy to impede the Jan. 6 congressional proceeding at which the collected results of the presidential election are counted and certified; a conspiracy against the right to vote and to have that vote counted; obstruction of, and attempt to obstruct and impede, the certification of the electoral vote.
Trump has been summoned to appear at 4:00 p.m. on Thursday at the E. Barrett Prettyman Courthouse in Washington, D.C., according to NBC News.
Official news of the indictment came after Trump said he expects to be indicted in connection with the probe.
“I hear that Deranged Jack Smith, in order to interfere with the Presidential Election of 2024, will be putting out yet another Fake Indictment of your favorite President, me, at 5:00 P.M.,” Trump wrote on his Truth Social platform.
“Why didn’t they do this 2.5 years ago? Why did they wait so long? Because they wanted to put it right in the middle of my campaign. Prosecutorial Misconduct!” he added.
In mid-July, Trump said he had been informed by Smith that he is a target of the criminal investigation into efforts to overturn the 2020 election, a sign he may soon be charged by the special counsel.
Smith was appointed by Attorney General Merrick Garland last November to oversee over two Justice Department investigations involving Trump: The investigation into efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election and his handling of classified documents, for which Trump has already been indicted and pleaded not guilty.
Before the indictment in the classified documents probe, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg charged the former president on 34 counts of falsifying business records in March.