John L. Ratcliffe sits during a Senate Intelligence Committee nomination hearing on Capitol Hill on Capitol Hill on May 5, 2020 in Washington, DC.
CNN  — 

Former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe testified before a federal grand jury Thursday in Washington, DC, as part of the special counsel’s criminal probe into the aftermath of the 2020 election.

Former President Donald Trump had sought to block testimony from Ratcliffe and other top officials from his administration, but courts have rejected his executive privilege claims.

The investigation led by special counsel Jack Smith has focused on January 6, 2021, and other efforts to overturn the presidential election.

Ratcliffe is likely of interest to investigators because he personally told Trump and his allies that there was no evidence of foreign election interference or widespread fraud.