Federal appeals court rejects Mark Meadows' bid to move his Georgia election case to federal court

The judges found his actions "were not related to Meadows's official duties."

December 18, 2023, 4:07 PM

A federal appeals court in Georgia has rejected a bid by former Trump Chief of Staff Mark Meadows to remove his Fulton County election interference case into federal court, affirming a lower court's decision that left it in state court.

In its opinion, the appeals court found that "the events giving rise to this criminal action were not related to Meadows's official duties."

The decision said that "even if Meadows were an 'officer,' his participation in an alleged conspiracy to overturn a presidential election was not related to his official duties."

Meadows was seeking to remove the case based on a law that calls for the removal of criminal proceedings when someone is charged for actions they allegedly took as a federal official acting "under color" of their office.

PHOTO: In this Oct. 21, 2020, file photo, Mark Meadows, White House chief of staff, speaks to members of the media outside of the White House in Washington, D.C.
In this Oct. 21, 2020, file photo, Mark Meadows, White House chief of staff, speaks to members of the media outside of the White House in Washington, D.C.
Polaris via Bloomberg via Getty Images, FILE

In this opinion, the court also found that the statute does not apply to former federal officers.

Meadows, along with former President Donald Trump and 17 others, pleaded not guilty in August to all charges in a sweeping racketeering indictment for alleged efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election in the state of Georgia.

Defendants Kenneth Chesebro, Sidney Powell, Jena Ellis and Scott Hall subsequently took plea deals in exchange for agreeing to testify against other defendants.

The former president has dismissed the case as being politically motivated.