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Rudy Giuliani, once "America's mayor," now finds himself in a heap of legal trouble

Rudy Giuliani speaks out after being charged in election interference case
Rudy Giuliani speaks out after being charged in election interference case 02:55

NEW YORK -- Of the 18 people named in the Georgia indictment, only Donald Trump and Rudy Giuliani are facing the maximum number of charges -- 13 each.

Giuliani went to NYU Law School and served in the highest levels of the U.S. Justice Department.

Giuliani has always been a man of many complexities and sometimes questionable actions. He ran for mayor on a law-and-order platform, but when his then-police commissioner, Bill Bratton, made the cover of Time magazine for his success in fighting crime, Giuliani fired him.

This is the man who became Trump's personal lawyer and has now been indicted with him.

"The era of fear has had a long enough reign," Giuliani said back on Jan. 1, 1994, one of the most momentous days of his life.

Rudolph William Louis Giuliani was inaugurated as the 107th mayor of New York City. He was a noted crimefighter who had broken the back of the mafia syndicate in New York, and used the organized crime racketeering statute, RICO, to do it.

"I know crimes. I can smell them. You don't have to smell this one. I can prove it to you 18 different ways," Giuliani said on Nov. 19, 2020.

Watch Marcia Kramer's report

Trump, Giuliani facing maximum number of charges in Georgia indictments 03:18

But it eventually led to a free-wheeling 90-minute press conference that left Giuliani with what appeared to be hair dye streaming down his face as he made unsubstantiated claims of fraud in the 2020 presidential election.

"It's disgraceful what happened," Giuliani said at the time.

Those claims have turned him from the so-called "America's mayor," who was knighted by Queen Elizabeth for his leadership after 9/11, into a defendant in an election fraud case.

Prosecutors turned his favorite crimefighting tool, RICO racketeering statutes, against him.

He is charged with promoting unsupported allegations of widespread election fraud in Georgia and participating in a plan to have 16 of the state's Republicans serve as fake electors.

In a sense, prosecutors are alleging he went from leader to liar.

"It's certainly a fall from grace for the former mayor," political strategist Basil Smikle said.

Smikle, who also teaches at a public policy institute at Hunter College, says Giuliani's current plight may be tied up in his lust for power. He once ran for president, unsuccessfully, but by aligning himself with Trump, "He put himself in a position where he was getting closer and closer to the level of power that he wanted and it seemed like it corrupted him in such a way that it spun out of control," Smikle said.

But strategist O'Brien Murray, who worked on Giuliani's successful mayoral campaign, says Giuliani's days in the political limelight are far from over. Given Team Trump's insistence that the charges are part of a political witch hunt, he sees Rudy going out on the presidential campaign trail for Trump.

"He's going to be a terrific speaker, motivating troops from the primaries with this hanging over his head. It will actually be a benefit in that arena," Murray said.

Giuliani called the indictment, "The next chapter in a book of lies."

A day after being charged in the case, Giuliani mocked the idea that he was a part of a RICO or racketeering ring.

"There's a whole RICO thing going on we didn't even know about. I gotta tell you, it will be interesting when we all get together. I don't know most of these people," he said.

But there are those who wonder if a former prosecutor who knows the criminal justice system like he does might decided to cut a deal to save himself.

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