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  • Writer's pictureLucas Nava

Giuliani attorney says former NYC mayor "is in no way seeking to delay these proceedings"

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Rudy Giuliani, a former attorney for former President Donald Trump and former New York City mayor, did not appear before an Atlanta grand jury investigating whether Trump attempted to illegally interfere in the 2020 general election in Georgia.

Although Giuliani was ordered by a judge in July to appear before the grand jury, Robert Costello, an attorney for Giuliani, told the Associated Press that his client had been excused for the day by Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney, who is serving as the grand jury's overseer.

"Judge Robert McBurney excused him pending a hearing tomorrow on the motion to continue," Costello wrote in a text message Monday.

Nothing found in publicly available court documents notes Giuliani's excusal, but McBurney had scheduled a 12:30 p.m. hearing to hear arguments on a court filing from Giuliani seeking to delay his appearance. Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis asked McBurney to deny Giuliani's request and order him to appear before the grand jury in a court filing Monday.

Willis had filed petitions seeking to compel testimony from seven Trump advisers and associates, including Giuliani. Because they are not located in Georgia, she attempted to get judges in their home states to order them to appear.

New York Supreme Court Justice Thomas Farber on July 19 ordered Giuliani to appear before the jury on Tuesday, as well as any other requested dates.

Giuliani attorney William Thomas asked the judge to delay Giuliani's appearance, explaining that his client had missed a hearing before Farber due to his recovery from a medical procedure. Another Giuliani lawyer asked Willis' office to delay his appearance due to his medical procedure preventing him from traveling.

However, Willis' team found evidence of Giuliani traveling following his procedure, and his request was denied. A Giuliani attorney then clarified that his client isn't cleared for air travel, but Willis refused to postpone his appearance, having found evidence of him traveling by air throughout late July, instead offering to sponsor alternative forms of transport.

Giuliani then offered to make an online appearance through an online platform, like Zoom.

"It is important to note here that Mr. Giuliani is in no way seeking to inappropriately delay, or obstruct these proceedings or avoid giving evidence or testimony that is not subject to some claim of privilege in this matter," Thomas said in a court filing, noting Giuliani's virtual appearance before the committee investing the January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.

"Mr. Giuliani is willing to do the same here under conditions that replicate a grand jury proceeding," Thomas said.

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