Meet The Former Biden DOJ Official Who Jumped Ship To Prosecute Trump

One of the prosecutors working on Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s case against former President Donald Trump previously was a top official in the Biden Department of Justice (DOJ).

Matthew Colangelo, who spent two years in the DOJ as acting associate attorney general, joined the Manhattan District Attorney’s office as senior counsel in December 2022 to focus on, as the office described it, the “most sensitive and high-profile white-collar investigations.” Colangelo has a history working on investigations into Trump: while at the New York District Attorney’s office, he led the investigation into the Trump Foundation, which culminated in its dissolution, and led the investigation that later became Trump’s civil fraud case, according to The New York Times.

When Colangelo was appointed in 2022, Bragg was still investigating Trump in connection to the $130,000 payment made to porn star Stormy Daniels to keep her quiet about allegations of an affair. Trump was indicted last year in April on 34 charges for allegedly falsifying business documents related to the payment.

“[A]ssisting with the District Attorney’s focus on financial crimes will promote confidence in the legal system by making clear that the same rules apply to everyone — no matter how powerful,” Colangelo said in a statement when he was appointed in 2022.

Former acting attorney general Matthew Whitaker said on Newsmax Tuesday that Colangelo is “the one who connects all of this and has really been directing traffic to make sure all of these cases proceed against Donald Trump and keep him off the election campaign trail.”

“The former #3 official in the entire Biden DOJ left that job to fulfill his dream of being a line prosecutor in a local DA’s office,” Article III Project senior counsel Will Chamberlain likewise wrote Monday on X. “To get Trump. But this is totally independent of the administration.”

Colangelo delivered opening statements for the prosecution Monday, arguing that Trump falsified business records related to the payment as part of a broader effort to “corrupt the 2016 election.”

“It was election fraud, pure and simple,” Colangelo said.

Earlier in his career, Colangelo spent seven years at the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), according to The New York Times. He also worked in the Obama administration.

While working in the New York Attorney General’s office, he also led the lawsuit challenging the Trump administration’s inclusion of a citizenship question on the census.

The gag order imposed by Judge Juan Merchant specifically prevents Trump from speaking about prosecutors on the case.

Trump has repeatedly said the case is “election interference,” referencing it as a “Biden witch hunt” and the “Biden Case.”

 

Republican Texas Rep. Lance Gooden asked the DOJ and Bragg in a letter Tuesday to supply “records and communications” relating to Colangelo’s hiring, noting the “pressing questions” it raised.

“The fact that Colangelo stepped down from a senior DOJ role to join a prosecution team in a city DA office raises some pressing concerns,” Gooden wrote. “While these serious underlying issues substantially overshadow the integrity and fairness of the trial, the New York judge instead issued a gag order barring President Trump from raising concerns about witnesses, prosecutors, court staff, and jurors, which includes Colangelo as one of the prosecutors.”

The district attorney’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.


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