Former New York City police commissioner Bernard Kerik is fighting a subpoena for his testimony in coming trials, saying he would only do so if offered an immunity deal.
Kerik wasn’t charged in the sweeping election interference case, but he is listed as an unindicted co-conspirator, a detail his attorney Tim Parlatore says would put him in legal jeopardy if he participates in the coming trial of Kenneth Chesebro and Sidney Powell.
“Given the public nature of your office’s allegations against Mr. Kerik, accusing him of being a co-conspirator, no competent criminal attorney would allow Mr. Kerik to testify absent a grant of immunity,” Parlatore wrote in a letter to the office of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis first reported by CNN and obtained by The Hill.
Kerik, who was previously pardoned by former President Trump after pleading guilty to tax and false statement charges, served as a top investigator for the former president as he was making baseless claims there was widespread fraud in the 2020 election.
The letter reflects the challenges for prosecutors pursuing Trump and his allies across multiple cases, with potential witnesses fearful participation could put them in legal jeopardy there or with federal investigators.
Kerik is mentioned a handful of times in the indictment as “co-conspirator Individual 5,” mostly referencing his attendance to various meetings with members of the Trump legal team coordinating with state lawmakers and fake electors.
Parlatore has argued that none of the meetings display any criminal conduct on Kerik’s part and that any assertion of the Fifth Amendment “does not require actual criminality, but rather the threat of possible prosecution.”
“You seemed genuinely surprised by this relatively basic application of the 5th Amendment right to not answer questions from the very prosecuting agency that has publicly accused him of being a co-conspirator,” Parlatore wrote.
“You made the public accusation, so now you must live with the consequences of Mr. Kerik (and presumably all other alleged unindicted co-conspirators) invoking their 5th Amendment rights and refusing to testify,” he said.
Kerik has previously spoken with members of special counsel Jack Smith’s team, doing so under a proffer agreement providing limited immunity.
But Parlatore said Willis’s team failed to do the same.
Parlatore references a call with Georgia prosecutors, writing that they said, “‘If we wanted to indict Mr. Kerik, we would have already done so,’ yet when I asked whether you were willing to put any assurances in writing, you refused.”
Willis’s office did not respond to request for comment.
Chesebro and Powell are slated to go to trial Oct. 23 after asking a Georgia judge for an expedited trial.
Updated 2:29 p.m.