Former US president, Donald Trump has been indicted for a third time on criminal charges related to his conduct in the 2020 presidential election, US special counsel Jack Smith has confirmed.
The former president is facing multiple charges, including conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, obstruction of an attempt to obstruct an official proceeding, and conspiracy against rights. The full indictment can be read in detail.
Trump is scheduled to appear at the Washington, DC, federal courthouse on Thursday at 4 p.m. ET. In response to the severity of the events on January 6, which Smith described as an “unprecedented assault on the seat of American democracy,” his office intends to pursue a speedy trial.
Remarkably, this marks the third time that Donald Trump has been criminally indicted. He was previously charged in June for the classified documents probe, and in March by a Manhattan grand jury for business fraud.
Despite these charges, Trump maintains his plea of not guilty in both cases. It is important to note that he is also actively running for the presidency in 2024 amid these legal proceedings.
In an interview on CNN a short time ago, Donald Trump’s attorney John Lauro says the indictment is an attempt to “censor free speech”.
He says Trump was told by people after the 2020 presidential election “that there were problems” with it and “he also saw in real time that the rules were changing without the state legislatures weighing in”.
Mr. Lauro said his client was relying on the advice of an attorney, John Eastman. Eastman was the architect of a legal strategy aimed at keeping Trump in power.