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Top prosecutor: Investigators are 'looking at' criminal charges against Trump for role in Capitol riot


'Everything's being looked at'

Michael Nigro/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

Michael Sherwin, the former interim U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, revealed Sunday that federal investigators are considering sedition charges against some individuals for their roles in the deadly U.S. Capitol violence on Jan. 6.

Surprisingly, Sherwin also admitted that investigators are considering what, if any, criminal liability there may be for former President Donald Trump.

What did Sherwin say?

Speaking on CBS' "60 Minutes," Sherwin said evidence is directing investigators to consider sedition charges against some of the rioters.

"I will tell you this. I personally believe the evidence is trending toward [sedition charges]," Sherwin admitted. "I believe the facts do support those charges. And I think that, as we go forward, more facts will support that."

The federal statue against sedition states:

If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both.

Sherwin, however, did not elaborate further, but earlier in the interview, he suggested the government is most aggressively pursing militia groups that participated in the riot.

Sherwin said prosecutors are trying to determine if the militia groups had a premeditated plan to breach the Capitol and stop the counting of the Electoral College vote.

In total, Sherwin said 400 people have been charged so far, and more people will be charged in the coming months.

What about Trump?

Sherwin revealed that investigators are determining what role Trump played in the violence.

"We have people looking at everything, correct. Everything's being looked at," Sherwin said when show host Scott Pelley asked about Trump's "role" in the violence.

In fact, Sherwin suggested there is evidence pointing both toward and against Trump's criminal culpability, citing rioters who say they acted because of Trump.

"It's unequivocal that Trump was the magnet that brought the people to D.C. on the 6th. Now the question is: Is he criminally culpable for everything that happened during the siege, during the breach?" Sherwin said.

"What I could tell you is this — based upon, again, what we see in the public record, and what we see in public statements in court — we have plenty of people— we have soccer moms from Ohio that were arrested saying, 'Well, I did this because my president said I had to take back our house.' That moves the needle towards that direction," he continued.

"Maybe the president is culpable for those actions," Sherwin said. "But also, you see in the public record too, militia members saying, 'You know what? We did this because Trump just talks a big game. He's just all talk. We did what he wouldn't do.'"

Detailing the charges facing the Capitol rioters www.youtube.com

Sherwin was tapped by the Trump administration to lead the U.S. attorney's office for the District of Columbia last spring. He stayed on through the Biden transition, but departed the office this month, so that President Joe Biden could name a permanent replacement.

Sherwin is returning to the U.S. attorney's office in Miami.

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