Former President Donald Trump has been indicted by a grand jury in New York for his alleged involvement in the hush money payment case. This marks a major turning point in the legal battle against the former president and his associates.
The indictment accuses Trump of using his personal attorney, Michael Cohen, to make illegal payments to two women during the 2016 presidential campaign in order to keep them from speaking out about their alleged affairs with Trump. The payments, which amounted to a total of $280,000, were made through Cohen’s shell company, Essential Consultants LLC.
The charges against Trump include conspiracy to commit campaign finance fraud, falsifying business records, and tax fraud. If convicted, he could face up to five years in prison for each charge.
The indictment comes after a lengthy investigation by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office and the New York Attorney General’s Office. Both offices have been looking into the payments for several years and have been interviewing witnesses and gathering evidence.
In a statement, the Manhattan District Attorney, Cyrus Vance Jr., said, “No one is above the law, not even the President of the United States. This indictment demonstrates that our justice system is fair and impartial, and that those who commit crimes will be held accountable.”
The Trump Organization, which is also named in the indictment, released a statement denying any wrongdoing. “This is a political witch hunt, plain and simple,” the statement read. “We have done nothing wrong, and we will fight these charges vigorously.”
Trump himself has not yet responded to the indictment. However, his legal team is expected to challenge the charges, and the case will likely be tied up in court for months or even years.
The indictment is just the latest legal trouble for Trump, who is also facing investigations into his business dealings, his taxes, and his role in the January 6th insurrection at the Capitol. While he may no longer be in office, it seems that the former president’s legal troubles are far from over.