Conservative operatives Jacob Wohl and Jack Burkman have been indicted in Ohio, once more over a racist robocall aimed at minority voters.
Wohl and Burkman, who rose to some level of infamy online for blundering attempts to manufacture sexual assault allegations against Democratic politicians and other Trump foes, have each been charged in Ohio’s Cuyahoga County with eight counts of telecommunications fraud and seven counts of bribery, a charge that includes attempts to convince people not to cast ballots. The indictment only adds to the growing mountain of criminal and civil problems facing the notorious pro-Trump pair.
In late August, a robocall that claimed to come from Wohl and Burkman warned voters not to use mail-in ballots, falsely claiming that the ballot information would be used to enforce vaccine mandates and collect on credit card debts. In the call, which was sent to 67,000 voters in the Midwest, according to prosecutors, a Black woman warned potential voters not to send in mail-in ballots or risk being fooled by “the man.”
“The right to vote is the most fundamental component of our nation’s democracy,” Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley said in a statement. “These individuals clearly infringed upon that right in a blatant attempt to suppress votes and undermine the integrity of this election These actions will not be tolerated.”
Michigan’s attorney general charged Wohl and Burkman in a separate case on Oct. 1 for the same robocall, which was also sent to voters in that state. They have also been sued in New York in a civil lawsuit by people who received the call.
Wohl, 22, and Burkman, 54, didn’t respond to an immediate request for comment.
The pair have claimed they didn’t arrange the robocall. In the Michigan case, however, prosecutors intend to call as a witness the owner of a robocall company who prosecutors say will testify that his company was used by Burkman and Wohl to send the robocalls. Michigan prosecutors have also claimed they have an email from Wohl arranging the robocall’s scripts.
Wohl is also facing felony charges in California over alleged violations of securities laws. And the FBI is investigating the pair over the leak of juror questionnaires in the trial of former Trump adviser Roger Stone, according to sealed court documents obtained by The Daily Beast.