A New York grand jury, on Thursday, indicted former US President, Donald Trump over hush money payments made to a porn star, Stormy Daniels, during his 2016 campaign.
Rant HQ understands that the indictment makes Trump the first former US president to face criminal charges. He had denied all wrongdoing in connection with the payments to Daniels in 2016.
The historic indictment of the 76-year-old Republican is certain to affect the current presidential race in which Trump hopes to regain office.
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office confirmed to AFP that it had contacted Trump’s lawyers on Thursday evening to “coordinate his surrender” for arraignment in New York with the felony charges against him to be revealed at that point.
Trump slammed the indictment as “political persecution and election interference,” raging against prosecutors and his Democratic opponents and vowing that it would backfire on his successor, President Joe Biden.
Surrendering for arraignment — which Trump’s lawyers have said he would do if indicted — would normally involve him being fingerprinted and photographed, potentially even handcuffed.
In the Republican camp, Trump’s allies and sons denounced what they see as a vendetta aimed at derailing his 2024 campaign — while his expected challenger for the party nomination, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, slammed the indictment as “un-American.”
An attorney for Daniels, Clark Brewster, welcomed the news, saying that no one is above the law.
He tweeted, “The indictment of Donald Trump is no cause for joy. Now let truth and justice prevail.”
Rant HQ reports that the New York investigation is the first to reach a decision on charges out of three major probes into the former president.
Trump also faces felony investigations in Georgia relating to the 2020 election and in Washington over the January 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol by the ex-president’s supporters, who hoped to keep him in office after his election loss to Joe Biden.
Trump, who is seen to be the frontrunner to be the Republican nominee in the 2024 election, has branded all of the investigations as political persecution.
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