Two leaders of True the Vote, a prominent right-wing group that promotes debunked voter fraud conspiracies, were jailed this week after a federal judge in Texas found them in contempt of court.
The group’s president Catherine Engelbrecht and onetime board member Gregg Phillips were taken into custody Monday after defying a court order to reveal more details in a civil case about one of their controversial attempts to uncover supposed fraud in the 2020 presidential election.
Court records indicate that Engelbrecht and Phillips are currently being held at the Joe Corley Detention Facility in Conroe, Texas. The two activists will remain in custody at the federal detention center until they abide by the court’s order, according to court filings. Attorneys for True the Vote are “expediting an appeal” for their release, their group said in a statement to CNN.
The current dispute stems from a lawsuit brought by Konnech, an election logistics software company that sued True the Vote and the two leaders for defamation, libel and slander. In recent months, True the Vote has pushed conspiracy theories about Konnech and the 2020 election, falsely claiming Konnech helped Joe Biden steal the election.
True the Vote is one of the most prominent conservative groups that peddle baseless claims of massive voter fraud and has championed so-called “election integrity” efforts for years. Their work fueled the debunked film “2,000 Mules,” which falsely claims Biden’s victory in 2020 was illegitimately achieved through systematic voter fraud.
Engelbrecht and Phillips have previously claimed that they and their analysts hacked a server and gained access to Konnech’s data and that the information on the server corroborated their unproven claims of election fraud. True the Vote has not offered any evidence that they successfully hacked Konnech, or that Konnech was involved in any election fraud.
The court order, in part, required True the Vote’s leaders to hand over the allegedly hacked documents, identify the people involved in the alleged hack, and confidentially tell Konnech how they hacked their system. Englebrecht and Phillips were jailed after they failed to comply with those parts, by the judge’s Monday morning deadline.
An attorney for True the Vote, Engelbrecht and Phillips referred CNN to the group’s statement. In the statement, Engelbrecht went on to claim that she and Phillips would be held in jail, “until we agree to give up the name of a person we believe was not covered under the terms” of the judge’s order.
Marshall Cohen contributed to this article.