Manhattan prosecutor Alvin Bragg and Trump prosecutor Matthew Colangelo will appear before Congress on July 12

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg speaks to the media after a jury found former President Donald Trump guilty of 34 counts of falsifying business records, Thursday, May 30, 2024, in New York. Donald Trump became the first former president to be convicted of a criminal offense when a New York jury found him guilty of 34 counts of falsifying business records as part of a scheme to illegally influence the 2016 election by concealing cash payments to a porn actor. who said the two of them had sex.Seth Wenig/AP

WASHINGTON (AP) Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg agreed to testify before Congress on July 12, a day after former President Donald Trump was convicted in his secret money trial.

A spokesman for Bragg’s office confirmed Tuesday that he will appear before the House subcommittee on weapons of the federal government along with Matthew Colangelo, a former senior Justice Department official who was hired by Bragg in 2022 and who helped lead the Trump investigation.

Bragg and Colangelo will face a hostile, Republican-controlled hearing in which the chairman, Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, will accuse both men of pursuing a “political prosecution” in the case against the former president. It will mark the latest effort by Trump’s closest allies in Congress to discredit the recent conviction of 34 people by going after local and federal prosecutors who brought charges against him.

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“Spreading dangerous disinformation, baseless claims and conspiracy theories after a jury returned a criminal conviction in People v. Trump undermines the rule of law,” said a spokesman for the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. “Nonetheless, we respect our government institutions and plan to voluntarily appear before the subcommittee following the verdict.”

Trump, the Republican Party’s presumptive presidential nominee, was convicted last month of falsifying documents to conceal hush money paid to a porn actor during the 2016 presidential campaign, and is scheduled for sentencing on July 11. Until then, prosecutors will make recommendations to judge what punishment Trump deserves.

Last year, Bragg, a Democrat, sued Jordan in an effort to halt the House Judiciary Committee’s investigation into Trump’s impeachment. He later agreed to allow the Republican-led committee to question former prosecutor Mark Pomerantz, who once oversaw the investigation but left after clashing with Bragg over the direction of the case.

Shortly after Trump’s impeachment in April 2023, Jordan took the Judiciary Committee on the road for a field hearing near Bragg’s office to examine what he denounced as “pro-crime, anti-victim” Democratic policies. Democrats described the hearing and various Republican efforts since then as a partisan stunt intended to amplify conservative anger at Bragg.

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Jordan has proposed withholding federal funding from any entity trying to prosecute the former president. He also complained about what he described as the “weaponization of the federal government.” Before Trump’s verdict was handed down last month, Jordan sent a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland demanding information about the Justice Department’s role in the local criminal investigation of the former president.

The Justice Department responded in a letter Tuesday, saying that while it “does not typically make extensive efforts to counter conspiracy speculation,” the department’s review of all communications from the start of the New York case in January 2021 through the sentencing found no contact between federal prosecutors and those involved in the hush money case.

“The District Attorney’s Office is a separate entity from the Department. The Department does not supervise the work of the District Attorney’s Office, does not approve its charging decisions and does not review its cases,” Deputy Attorney General Carlos Uriarte said in a letter obtained by AP. “The Division has no control over the District Attorney, just as the District Attorney has no control over the Division.”

He added: “The committee knows this.”

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Bragg, a former civil rights lawyer and law professor, is beginning his first term as Manhattan district attorney. When he took office in 2021, he inherited the Trump investigation. Before he moved to impeach Trump last year, he oversaw the prosecution of Trump’s company in an unrelated tax fraud case.

He and Colangelo previously worked together on Trump-related matters in the New York attorney general’s office. During the trial, Colangelo delivered opening statements and questioned several witnesses, including former White House communications director Hope Hicks.