TRUMP TRIAL. Indicted in four court cases, Donald Trump must be tried in at least three trials in 2024. The first begins on March 4. What are the charges against the former president and what does he risk?
Donald Trump shouts at “election interference”. His federal trial in Washington DC for the attempt to overturn the result of the 2020 presidential election has been set for March 4, 2024, during the campaign he will lead for the presidential election of 2024. A date set on Monday 28 August 2023 by Judge Tanya Chutkan who will preside over the proceedings. On his social network, Truth Social, the billionaire accused the magistrate of “hating” him and announced that he was filing an appeal.
The trial of Donald Trump – the first in a series of four – falls badly, because the former tenant of the White House risks big by being tried for conspiracy against the United States after the storming of the Capitol organized in January 2021 and in which he bears some responsibility. This passage before American justice could bring down Donald Trump or on the contrary strengthen his popularity with Republican voters, but it will not be without consequences for political life. In the event of an acquittal in this federal case, Donald Trump would become almost unbeatable in the eyes of voters on the American right, according to Whit Ayres, a Republican political consultant, quoted by theAFP. But the specialist admits having difficulty predicting what would happen in the event of the billionaire’s conviction: “I don’t know how people would react. We have never experienced a situation that closely or remotely resembles that -this”.
When will the Donald Trump trials take place?
Donald Trump’s first trial, the one for the attempt to overturn the result of the 2020 presidential election, will begin on March 4, 2024 in Washington DC. A date which falls during the presidential campaign of 2024 in which Donald Trump intends to participate and which does not help him. The real estate magnate’s lawyers have tried to push back the legal deadline by asking for a postponement of the judgment in 2026, i.e. “five years after the facts – the assault on the Capitol, among others -, which presents the real risk that the witnesses are no longer available or that their memories are erased” remarked the judge in charge of the case, Tanya Chutkan. Which refused the defense proposal.
More than just a trial, it is a legal marathon that awaits Donald Trump in 2024 with at least three trials on his agenda:
- March 4, 2024 for the attempt to overturn the outcome of the 2020 presidential election
- March 20, 2024 for buying Stormy Daniels silence and hidden campaign costs in 2016
- May 25, 2024 for receiving classified government documents
A fourth trial is also scheduled for the manipulation of the 2020 presidential election in the state of Georgia, but the date has yet to be set.
Donald Trump in prison, the photo of the historic “mugshot”
Donald Trump, who managed to escape prison for his first three charges, was finally detained on Thursday August 24, 2023. A very brief stay behind bars decided by the Atlanta court before which the former tenant of the White House appeared for attempting to manipulate the result of the 2020 presidential election in the state of Georgia.
The imprisonment of the presidential candidate of 2024 was limited to the time of fingerprinting, the so-called “mugshot” photo identification and the payment of the deposit of 200,000 dollars, an amount that the man had already promised to pay to avoid pre-trial detention. And if Donald Trump denounced a “simulacrum of justice”, he very quickly took advantage of his time in prison by publishing himself the snapshot of his “mugshot” on Twitter embellished with a “Never surrender”. The photo, serving as an argument for his electoral campaign, was accompanied by an accusation of electoral interference and a request for a donation addressed to his constituents. A marketing coup that allowed the candidate to raise seven million euros for his campaign in just three days.
The cliché is historic since Donald Trump is the first former American president to have his face registered in the judicial and prison administrative system.
What does Donald Trump risk during these trials?
Charged in four separate cases, Donald Trump has a total of 119 charges against him. Among them, at least seven can be punished with a maximum of 20 years in prison each. Without counting the charges of the last case – that concerning the manipulation of the 2020 presidential election in Georgia – Donald Trump already faces up to 641 years in prison according to the calculation of Politico.
There is therefore a risk that Donald Trump will be sentenced to prison, but in fact the chances that the septuagenarian will be incarcerated are low. Firstly because the American courts have great latitude as to the sentences handed down, secondly because there is no minimum sentence imposed for the counts retained and finally because the maximum sentences are rarely pronounced against persons free of criminal records, which is – for the moment – the case of the real estate magnate.
The fact remains that in the two federal cases – that of the assault on the Capitol and that of the concealment of classified documents – Donald Trump is accused of crimes which can give rise to heavy sentences. In both cases substantial prison sentences could be requested. The other risk for Donald Trump concerns the consequences of these charges and possible convictions for his candidacy for the presidential election.
Donald Trump and the Capitol Storming Case
This case is the third in which Donald Trump has been charged, on August 3, 2023, but it is above all the one with the most serious charges against Donald Trump. It concerns the attempt by the former tenant of the White House to overturn the result of the 2020 presidential election and the victory of Joe Biden. The culmination of this affair is none other than the assault on the Capitol, organized on January 6, 2021, in which the billionaire played a key role. During the indictment four counts were brought against Donald Trump:
- Fraudulent conspiracy against the United States (dissemination of false information on fraud and voting machines, pressure on justice and on the vice-president to encourage him to reject the votes in the states won by Joe Biden, designation of ” fake grand electors” in these states);
- Conspiracy to deprive voters of their right to vote;
- Conspiracy to obstruct official process;
- Obstruction of official procedure, namely the certification of Joe Biden’s victory by Congress.
Donald Trump pleaded not guilty to all of the leaders and denounced a “political persecution”. In the indictment issued by theAFP and many US media, it is stated that “despite his defeat, the accused was determined to stay in power. Therefore, for more than two months after the November 3, 2020 poll, the accused disseminated lies that there had been cheats that altered the outcome and that he had in fact won.” The indictment then specifies that Donald Trump was well aware that the information he was relaying was lies, “but the defendant repeated them and disseminated them widely despite everything”. The trial will begin on March 4, 2024.
Donald Trump and the Stormy Daniels affair
The purchase of the silence of the pornographic actress Stormy Daniels is the first case in which Donald Trump was indicted, on April 4, 2023. More broadly, the American billionaire was accused of having “orchestrated” the payment of bribes -wine to cover up embarrassing affairs during the 2016 presidential campaign, the one that signed his victory. Among his payments, three are blamed on Donald Trump:
- $30,000 to a Trump Tower doorman who claimed to have information about a hidden child;
- $130,000 to porn actress Stormy Daniels to stop her from speaking out about an alleged extramarital affair;
- $150,000 to a woman who claimed to be a former mistress.
The case gained momentum when the wall street journal revealed the payment made to Stephanie Clifford, real name of porn actress Stormy Daniels, for concealing an alleged sexual relationship she allegedly had with the former president in 2006, when the latter was married to Melanie Trump for a year. But more than the payment of these sums which sometimes resulted from an agreement, it is their concealment in “legal fees” of the Trump Tower Organization which constitutes an offense. According to justice, these costs could be similar to campaign expenses. Donald Trump has therefore been charged with “falsification of accounting documents”, detailed in 34 charges. The trial date has been set for March 25, 2024.
Donald Trump and the concealment of classified documents
When he left the White House in January 2021, Donald Trump took government documents in his luggage, while all these documents must be returned to the National Archives each time there is a change of president, according to a 1978 law. After numerous requests for restitution of the documents, the billionaire handed over 15 boxes which included 184 classified documents. What justify the opening of an investigation and later a search of Donald Trump’s home in Mar-a-Lago, Florida. On the spot the investigators got their hands on 33 other cartons of government documents comprising 11,000 documents, including 103 bearing the seal of confidentiality and 18 classified “top secret”.
Donald Trump was charged in this case on June 13, 2023 before a Florida judge. 37 charges were brought including “unlawful retention of information relating to national security”, “obstructing justice” and “false testimony”. Three counts were then added to the file, in particular for “attempting to erase CCTV images”. This is a federal case like the Capitol assault investigation. The trial is set for May 20, 2024.
Donald Trump and the manipulation of the 2020 presidential election in Georgia
This is the last case in which Donald Trump was charged, on August 23, 2023. It concerns the attempt to manipulate the result of the 2020 presidential election in the state of Georgia. The one who wishes to run for a new term in the White House was brought before an Atlanta court and was, for the first time, placed under arrest before being released on payment of bail of $200,000. With this passage in prison, Donald Trump was photographed for the “mugshot”, the photo of legal identification.
In this case, 41 charges were brought, including “false declarations and false documents, usurpation of public office, forgery and use of forgery”, pressure on witnesses, a series of computer crimes or even perjury. the prosecutor. A fourth trial is to take place in this case, but the date remains to be confirmed. The prosecutor said she wanted to see the case judged “within six months”, but it is up to the judge to set a date.