April 3, 2023
Donald Trump faces more than 30 counts related to business fraud in an indictment from a Manhattan grand jury, according to two sources familiar with the case—the first time in American history that a current or former president has faced criminal charges, reports CNN.
Trump is expected to surrender himself and appear in court on Tuesday, April 4. The indictment has been filed under seal and will be announced in the coming days. The charges are not publicly known at this time.
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office has been investigating the former president in connection with his alleged role in a hush-money-payment scheme and cover-up involving adult film star Stormy Daniels that dates to the 2016 presidential election.
Grand jury proceedings are secret, but a source familiar with the case told CNN that a witness gave about 30 minutes of testimony before jurors voted to indict Trump.
Trump released a statement in response to the indictment claiming it was “Political Persecution and Election Interference at the highest level in history.”
“I believe this Witch-Hunt will backfire massively on Joe Biden,” the former president said. “The American people realize exactly what the Radical Left Democrats are doing here. Everyone can see it. So our Movement, and our Party—united and strong—will first defeat Alvin Bragg, and then we will defeat Joe Biden, and we are going to throw every last one of these Crooked Democrats out of office so we can MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”
Trump was caught off guard by the grand jury’s decision to indict him, according to a person who spoke directly with him. While the former president was bracing for an indictment last week, he began to believe news reports that a potential indictment was weeks—or more—away.
“Is this a shock today? Hell yes,” the person said, speaking on a condition of anonymity as Trump’s team calculated its response.
Bragg’s office said it is in touch with Trump’s lawyers.
“This evening we contacted Mr. Trump’s attorney to coordinate his surrender to the Manhattan D.A.’s Office for arraignment on a Supreme Court indictment, which remains under seal,” the district attorney’s office said in a statement on Thursday, March 30. “Guidance will be provided when the arraignment date is selected.”
Research contact: @CNN