Former President Donald Trump is at fault for the events of Jan. 6, a defendant’s attorney alleged Tuesday, claiming critics were trying to take advantage of his client instead, Politico reported.
Closing arguments continued Tuesday in the Washington, D.C. trial of former Proud Boys National Chairman Enrique Tarrio and members Ethan Nordean, Joseph Biggs, Zachary Rehl and Dominic Pezzola for allegedly conspiring to oppose the January 2021 transfer of presidential power and related charges. Tarrio’s attorney Nayib Hassan argued that he did not trigger the Jan. 6 riots, instead blaming Trump.
“They want to use Enrique Tarrio as a scapegoat for Donald Trump and those in power,” Hassan said, according to Politico.
“It was Donald Trump’s words. It was his motivation,” Hassan declared, the outlet reported. “It was his anger that caused what occurred on January 6 in your amazing and beautiful city.”
Justice Department attorneys said in March that Trump can be civilly sued over the Jan. 6 riots, despite his claims to have absolute immunity as president at the time, according to The New York Post.
The Proud Boys trial has been marked by accusations of Jan. 6 activity by dozens of previously-unknown government informants. Judge Timothy Kelly declined to grant Tarrio and his fellow defendants a mistrial after Pezzola’s attorney Roger Roots claimed that at least 40 undercover officers, agents and other informants for the D.C. Metro Police Department, FBI and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) did surveillance work among defendants on Jan. 6.
Following a March revelation that a woman Tarrio’s defense team intended to call as a witness had been an FBI informant from April 2021 to January 2023, Kelly forbid them from raising that matter with the jury. Tarrio’s attorney Sabino Jauregui subsequently decided not to call the woman to testify.
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