Skip to main contentSkip to main content
You have permission to edit this article.
Edit
AP

Minneapolis man found guilty of lying in vote fraud trial

  • Updated
  • 0

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A Minneapolis man was found guilty Tuesday of lying to a federal grand jury about abusing a process for submitting absentee ballots for other voters during Minnesota's primary election in August 2020.

After a day of testimony, the jury of 10 women and two men took just 40 minutes to convict Muse Mohamud Mohamed of two counts of making false statements to a grand jury, according to Minnesota Public Radio.

Mohamed, 30, was accused of falsely telling the grand jury last fall that he had obtained three absentee ballots for the primary on behalf of three voters who then filled them out before he returned them to the election office.

Federal prosecutors said Mohamed didn't take any of the three ballots to the absentee voters named on the envelopes, and that none of the voters gave him ballots to return. The defense disputes the charges.

Mohamed went on trial Monday before U.S. District Judge Nancy Brasel in Minneapolis. Here's a deeper look at the issues in the case:

AGENCY VOTING

Absentee voters in Minnesota can use “agent delivery." It's meant for voters who intend to vote in person, but become unable due to health reasons or disabilities. They can then request absentee ballots after the normal deadline and can designate an “agent” to act on their behalf. That agent must be at least 18, have a pre-existing relationship with the voter, and can't be a candidate. A agent can pick up and deliver ballots for no more than three voters in any given election.

THE DEFENDANT'S ROLE

According to a prosecution filing, city election documents show that Mohamed delivered three ballots as an agent for three voters in the Aug. 11, 2020, primary election. But prosecutors allege the three voters did not know Mohamed and did not ask him to pick up or deliver absentee ballots for them. One ballot he allegedly attempted to return was rejected because the voter had voted in person.

Mohamed was later subpoenaed and testified twice before a federal grand jury investigating the agent delivery process for the 2020 primary, the filing said.

“Ultimately, Mohamed stated he received the three absentee ballots from the voters themselves. When confronted with the fact that the voters each gave statements that they do not know Mohamed and that they did not ask him or anyone for agent delivery of their ballots for the August 2020 election, Mohamed continued to stand by his answer that he received the ballots from the voter,” prosecutors wrote.

THE 2020 PRIMARY

The August 2020 primary in Minnesota wasn't part of the nominating process for the 2020 presidential election, which former President Donald Trump still falsely claims he won. Mohamed was a volunteer in that campaign for Omar Fateh, according to reporting by the Minnesota Reformer and the Sahan Journal, two independent news websites. Fateh, a democratic socialist, defeated incumbent Democratic Sen. Jeff Hayden in the primary by around 2,000 votes and went on to with the general election for the south Minneapolis seat. At most, two of the allegedly fraudulent ballots handled by Mohamed were counted, not nearly enough to effect the outcome of any race on the ballot.

THE INVESTIGATION

Mohamed is the only person known to have been indicted as a result of the grand jury investigation. Those proceedings are normally secret, and no details have emerged except for those related to the charges against Mohamed in this case. So the scope of the investigation and whether it uncovered any other vote fraud remains unclear.

According to the Sahan Journal, Muse’s sister is Zaynab Mohamed, the Democratic-endorsed candidate for a neighboring Senate district in Minneapolis. She told the news outlet that she was not involved in his trial, nor was she a subject of the investigation.

VOTE FRAUD IS RARE

Multiple reviews, recounts, lawsuits and an investigation by The Associated Press have confirmed there was no widespread fraud in the last White House race. The AP's review found that virtually every case was based on an individual acting alone to cast additional ballots. Nationally, federal and state election officials and Trump’s own attorney general have said there was no credible evidence the election was tainted anywhere in the country.

Democratic Secretary of State Steve Simon has said repeatedly that Minnesota's 2020 elections were fair and honest, with no credible evidence of significant voter fraud.

In another Minnesota case, Abdihakim Amin Essa was sentenced to probation last month in state court for pleading guilty to four vote fraud counts in the 2018 election. Nine other counts were dismissed in the plea agreement. He was accused of signing as a witness for 13 people who cast absentee ballots when he legally couldn't because he wasn't a U.S. citizen, and signing with his father's name. All 13 ballots were rejected.


This story has been updatedd to correct Muse Mohamud Mohamed’s age as 30, not 34.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

0 Comments
0
0
0
0
0

Get Government & Politics updates in your inbox!

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

Most Popular

A bipartisan group of senators is trying to find a compromise on gun legislation. That's after Democrats’ first attempt at responding to the mass shootings in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas, failed Thursday in the Senate. Republicans blocked debate on a domestic terrorism bill that would've opened debate on hate crimes and gun policy. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer says he'll give negotiations about two weeks while Congress is in recess. The bipartisan group of senators met after the vote and focused on background checks for guns purchased online or at gun shows, red-flag laws designed to keep guns away from those who could do harm and school security measures.

Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia has easily dispatched Donald Trump's hand-picked challenger in a Republican primary that demonstrated the limits of the former president and his conspiracy-fueled politics in a critical swing state. The results, combined with the loss of the Trump-backed candidate for secretary of state, serve as a stinging rebuke in a race Trump prioritized above almost all others. Angered by Kemp's refusal to go along with his extraordinary effort to overturn the 2020 election results in Georgia, Trump recruited former Sen. David Perdue. But Kemp ultimately emerged as a powerful candidate. He will face Democrat Stacey Abrams this fall in one of the nation's most consequential governor's races.

Fallout from last week’s primary election in Pennsylvania is playing out in the General Assembly. Two central Pennsylvania Republican House members are being punished for working to unseat fellow incumbents. In the Senate, Republican gubernatorial nominee Sen. Doug Mastriano is being allowed back inside the Republican caucus’ closed-door meetings. He'd been kicked out last year after leaders concluded he had shared information that was supposed to be confidential. In the House, Republican leaders stripped state Rep. Mike Jones of several committee assignments after his primary campaign work in York County helped defeat two senior incumbents. Republican Rep. Dave Zimmerman also lost committee spots over similar efforts in Lancaster County.

Former White House press secretary Sarah Sanders has won the Republican nomination for governor in Arkansas. Sanders defeated former talk radio host Doc Washburn in Tuesday’s Republican primary. Nuclear engineer Chris Jones won the Democratic nomination. Sanders was endorsed by her former boss, former President Donald Trump, and shattered fundraising records since entering the race last year.  She’s running to succeed outgoing Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who is barred by term limits from seeking reelection and is considering a run for president in 2024.

One by one, speakers took the stage at the National Rifle Association’s annual convention in Houston and denounced the massacre of 19 students and two teachers at an elementary school across the state. And one by one, they insisted that changing U.S. gun laws or further restricting access to firearms was not the answer. The gathering comes just three days after the shooting in Uvalde. Hundreds of protesters shouted their anger at the NRA outside the meeting. In remarks to the group, former President Donald Trump called for an overhaul of school security and the U.S. approach to mental health problems while dismissing calls to disarm gun owners.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has quickly set in motion a pair of firearms background check bills in response to the school massacre in Texas. But the Democrat acknowledged Wednesday the refusal for years of Congress to pass any legislation aiming to curb a national epidemic of gun violence. The failure of a firearms background check bill after 20 children were shot and killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School almost a decade ago signaled the end of gun violence legislation in Washington. If the new deaths don't convince Congress to act, Schumer said on the Senate floor, “what can we do?”

Russian President Vladimir Putin is trying to strengthen his control of southern Ukraine by giving residents of two regions a fast path to Russian citizenship. Meanwhile, lawmakers in Moscow passed a bill to bolster Russia's army, which is fighting an intense battle for Ukraine’s east. Putin visited a Moscow military hospital on Wednesday and met with some soldiers wounded in Ukraine. Three months into the war, Russian rockets pounded towns in the industrial Donbas region. Ukraine’s foreign minister said the situation there was “extremely bad.” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy reiterated that he'd be willing to negotiate with Putin directly but said Moscow needs to retreat to the positions it held before the Feb. 24 invasion.

The House Ethics Committee is investigating allegations that Republican Rep. Madison Cawthorn had a conflict of interest in a cryptocurrency he promoted and engaged in an improper relationship with a member of his staff. That's according to a statement the panel released Monday. It's just the latest moment of scrutiny for the North Carolina Republican, who lost his primary race last week despite having the support of former President Donald Trump. Cawthorn's office said it “welcomes the opportunity” to prove his innocence. The Ethics panel cautioned that the opening of the investigation does not mean that Cawthorn violated House rules.

The 18-year-old man who slaughtered 19 children and two teachers in Texas left a digital trail that hinted at what was to come. He posted an Instagram photo of a hand holding a gun magazine. In his TikTok profile he warned, “Kids be scared.” And he pinned the image of two AR-style semi-automatic rifles displayed on a rug to the top of his profile. But those foreboding posts hardly stick out on an endless grid of Instagram photos that feature semi-automatic rifles, handguns and ammunition. There’s even a popular hashtag devoted to encouraging Instagram users to upload daily photos of guns with more than 2 million posts attached to it.

Delegations from Sweden and Finland have held talks with senior Turkish officials in an effort to overcome Turkey’s objections to their joining NATO. The talks took place in Ankara on Wednesday. Turkey says it opposes the two Nordic countries’ membership in the Western military alliance, which admits new members only by unanimous votes. Turkey cites grievances with Sweden's — and to a lesser extent Finland’s — perceived support of groups it views as terrorists. It also accuses the two of imposing arms exports restrictions on Turkey. Turkey’s objections have dampened Stockholm's and Helsinki’s hopes for joining NATO quickly amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and put the alliance's credibility at stake.

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.

Topics

News Alerts

Breaking News