Financial TimesFinancial Times

Donald Trump’s mounting legal jeopardy

11 Jun 2023 · 3 min read

Editor's Note

Donald Trump's latest charges could land him 400 years in prison. The legal case presents a serious test for the U.S. judiciary, which must deliver justice without fear or favor, The FT writes.

The charge sheet against Donald Trump keeps getting longer. After the 34-count indictment against him in late March for falsifying records of hush money paid to a porn star, we can now add his 37-count indictment for hiding classified documents. Those will be read out in a Miami court on Tuesday. In August, Trump is likely to be indicted for attempting to overturn the results of the presidential election in Georgia. At any point, he could also be charged for his role in the January 6 2021 mob attack of Capitol Hill.

Each one of these cases breaks precedent. Never has a former US president been charged with a crime, let alone one who is seeking to become president again. The special counsel, Jack Smith, was at pains to underline that Trump, like any other US citizen, is innocent until proven guilty. But the volume and range of charges against him suggest he faces high odds of an eventual prison sentence. The latest allegations alone entail up to 400 years in prison time. Even a convicted Trump could continue to run for office from jail.

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