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Potential Trump indictment limits decades of legal scrutiny

40 years, former president donald trump I have navigated countless legal investigations without facing criminal charges. That record may soon come to an end.

Trump could be indicted by Manhattan grand jury as early as this weekwas charged with falsifying business records related to hush money payments to women who accused them of sexual encounters during a 2016 campaign.

It’s one of several investigations that have intensified as Trump runs for president for a third time. He denies allegations of wrongdoing and accuses prosecutors of engaging in a politically motivated “witch hunt” to damage his campaign.

An indictment in New York would mark an astounding change in American history, making Trump the first ex-president to face criminal charges. And that carries tremendous weight on Trump himself, threatening his long-standing ability to avoid consequences despite being entangled in a dizzying number of cases.

Biographer Michael D’Antonio said the indictment “would be a shocking event. The fact that it was the first time a former president was indicted and his dedication to being one of the slipperiest at the highest levels of the business. It is well established that abusing the system has been arrested. “

“Throughout his life, he has done things that could have been investigated and prosecuted, and those experiences have taught him that he can act with innocence.”

Trump first came under legal scrutiny in the 1970s, when the Justice Department filed a racial discrimination lawsuit against his family’s real estate business.

Mr Trump and his father vehemently opposed the lawsuit, accusing them of refusing to rent apartments to black tenants in a predominantly white building. It was marked with a “C” for “colored”. Trump sued the government for defamation and countersued for $100 million.

The lawsuit ended in a settlement that paved the way for some black residents, but did not force the Trumps to explicitly admit to their “failure and neglect” to comply with the Fair Housing Act. .

Since then, Trump and his business have been the subject of thousands of civil lawsuits and numerous investigations. His casino and real estate deals, bribery and improper lobbying allegations, fraud allegations against the now-defunct Trump University and the charity Trump Foundation, and investigations are underway. by Manhattan District Attorney For sale at the Trump Soho Hotel Condominium in Lower Manhattan.

surely, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in WashingtonAs of November 2022, Trump had been accused of committing at least 56 crimes since he began his campaign in 2015. However, he was never formally charged.

Trump is a master of delay tactics, “finding ways to endlessly delay investigations and litigation in the hope that they will go away, and he’s been having spectacular success,” said CREW, a former federal corruption prosecutor. Noah Bookbinder, President, said.

“Accountability is absolutely essential in a functioning democracy because people cannot commit crimes and come to power with complete impunity without ever having to face the consequences,” he said. rice field.

Trump’s rebuttal to such strong statements: He committed no crime, so the result itself is unfair.

As president, Trump continued to face legal scrutiny. The Justice Department spent two years investigating the 2016 election campaign and its ties to Russia. Special Counsel Robert Mueller found no direct evidence of collusion, but his final report presented evidence of obstruction. Because of this, he said he could not recommend criminal charges against Trump, even in secret.

The investigation has grown closer since Trump resigned.

In January, the company bearing his name was fined $1.6 million for tax crimes, including conspiracy and falsification of business records. is serving time as punishment for evading taxes on the benefits of

Additional cases are still being pursued. In Georgia, Fulton County District Attorney Fanny Willis is investigating whether Trump and his allies illegally interfered in the 2020 election. principal. It will be up to Willis to make the final decision on whether to move forward.

In Washington, Trump is under scrutiny for his handling by Special Counsel Jack Smith. Confidential documents after leaving the company, and for his widely publicized efforts to stay in power despite his defeat in the 2020 election. In a document review, Justice Department attorneys said Trump had gathered evidence of potential crimes, including potential attempts to hold defense intelligence and sabotage their work.

Some legal experts question the wisdom of filing the Manhattan case against Trump first when more serious charges may be looming. Unless prosecutors can prove it was done to cover up another crime, they are likely to be charged with falsifying business records. And the incident goes back several years.

Attorney and former Justice Department prosecutor Michael Weinstein said Trump would likely exploit that potential weakness for political gain.

Weinstein said, “This incident happened in the first place and gave him the opportunity to attack and attack. It’s the only way for him.”

Still, he said the prospect of indictment felt like the natural culmination of an “unbelievable series of investigations” in which the former president had “survived and fought for the past 40 years.”

“There is a history and a pattern in which he says and does things with no consequences,” Weinstein said. In the next 12 months, he may face two or three criminal cases with serious criminal charges.”

The New York lawsuit includes payments by Trump’s former lawyers, Michael Cohena pornographic actor who served a prison term after pleading guilty to federal indictments in 2018 Stormy Daniels and model Karen McDougall. Cohen was reimbursed by Trump, and the company recorded the reimbursement as a “legal expense.”

Politically, Trump supporters believe the lawsuit will actually benefit the former president in the short term by making him more competitive in the Republican primary, and will eventually lead to a conviction. If not, we believe we will provide another boost later.

“New York prosecutors did more to help Donald Trump get elected,” says Republican Senator Lindsay Graham. It could damage the general election.

Indictments will not stop Trump from continuing his campaign. There is nothing stopping you from running when you are facing criminal charges or even being convicted. Indeed, convicted felons have run for president before, including behind bars.

“It’s unbelievable to think that a former president will be on the eve of being indicted as the 2024 Republican front-runner,” says presidential historian Douglas Brinkley. You would have thought it would be a disqualifying factor for presidential politics, but Trump has consistently surprised people with his devious and inappropriate behavior that transcends it by being the victim of a witch hunt.” Potential Trump indictment limits decades of legal scrutiny

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