Rolling Stone: Jan. 6 Leaders, Trump Team Used Burner Phones

Those communications could be difficult for House investigators to trace
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 24, 2021 8:33 AM CST
Jan. 6 Organizers Spoke to Trump Family on Burner Phones: Report
In this Jan. 6, 2021 file photo, Amy Kremer, founder and chair of Women for America First, speaks in Washington, at a rally in support of President Donald Trump.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

Organizers of the "Save America" rally on the White House Ellipse that preceded the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol communicated with former President Trump's team using burner phones purchased with cash, according to a report from Rolling Stone. Kylie Kremer—a top official with the March for Trump group that helped organize the rally, who also serves as executive director of the pro-Trump Women For America First organization, which obtained the rally permit—told an aide to buy three burner phones about a week before the event, adding it was "of the utmost importance" that they be purchased with cash, three sources tell the outlet.

Kremer said she needed the anonymous, prepaid phones "to communicate with high level people," says a March for Trump group member. "They were planning all kinds of stuff, marches and rallies." She reportedly used one phone for all her communications with White House and Trump campaign officials, including Eric Trump and his wife, Lara; former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows; and campaign consultant Katrina Pierson; and gave a second to her mother, Amy Kremer, another March for Trump leader who is founder and chair of Women For America First. It's unclear what happened to the third phone.

The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack has subpoenaed documents from the Kremers, other rally organizers and March for Trump members, as well as Trump's White House staff and campaign team, per CNN. Text messages show the Kremers claimed to be working with the Trump White House to plan the event, where President Trump directed attendees to walk to the Capitol and "fight like hell," per Rolling Stone. Amy Kremer also described a Dec. 1 meeting at the White House. However, "the use of burner phones could make it more difficult for congressional investigators to find evidence of coordination between Trump's team and rally planners," per the outlet. (More Capitol riot stories.)

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