Former President faces 37 counts of indictment

A 37-count indictment against Donald Trump was dropped on Friday. It uncovered allegations that the former president deliberately kept hundreds of confidential government documents and conspired to prevent their return to US officials.

The indictment document, which alleges Trump kept records containing national defense information at his Florida home after leaving the White House, was released a day after a grand jury in the US District Court in Miami voted to indict him , published.

The indictment states, among other things, that Trump showed other people confidential documents in the summer of 2021, after he left office in January of this year.

Follow our live coverage of the indictment of Donald Trump in the classified documents case.

One of those documents was an “attack plan” that the Pentagon had been preparing, he told a publisher and author at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey.

“As President, I could have declassified it,” Trump said, according to an audio recording of that July 2021 comment cited in the indictment.

“Now I can’t, you know, but that’s still a secret,” he added.

About a month later, in Bedminster, Trump showed a representative of a political action committee “a classified card relating to a military operation” and told the other man, “He should not show it to the representative, and the representative should not be allowed to close it,” it says in the indictment.

The indictment also indicted Trump’s valet Walter Nauta, who faces several of the same charges as his boss, with whom he allegedly conspired to keep confidential records and hide them from a federal grand jury.

The indictment says Trump personally took part in packing boxes of documents as he prepared to evict the White House at his home at his Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida.

The FBI’s Mar-a-Lago raid last August uncovered hundreds of classified documents that Trump was unable to turn over to US officials after they tried for about a year to recover them.

The indictment states that as president, Trump placed documents in cardboard boxes containing information about the defense and weapons capabilities of the United States and other countries, about US nuclear programs, and “potential vulnerabilities of the United States and its allies to military attack.” .

When he left the White House, Trump ordered dozens of such boxes shipped to Mar-a-Lago, where they were stored in a ballroom, bathroom, shower and office space along with his bedroom and a storeroom. it says in the indictment.

“On December 7, 2021, Nauta found that several of Trump’s boxes had fallen over, spilling their contents on the storage room floor [at Mar-a-Lago] including a document marked “SECRET//REL TO USA, FVEY” stating that the information in the document was only distributed to the Five Eyes intelligence alliance, made up of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States, may be passed on,” says the indictment.

During the time Trump had the documents at Mar-a-Lago, his club hosted more than 150 social events, drawing tens of thousands of guests, the indictment said.

Justice Department Special Counsel Jack Smith, who led the investigation into Trump, said in a televised statement Friday afternoon: We have a set of laws in this country and they apply to everyone.”

“Our laws protecting national defense information are critical to the security of the United States and must be enforced,” Smith said. “Violations of these laws endanger our country.”

The Special Counsel continues to oversee a separate criminal investigation into Trump’s efforts to redeem his loss to President Joe Biden in the 2020 election.

Former U.S. President Donald Trump is seen in Midtown on April 3, 2023 in New York City. Following his indictment by a grand jury, Trump is scheduled to be indicted tomorrow in a Manhattan courthouse.

Gotham | Gc Images | Getty Images

Trump, who is seeking the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, and Nauta are scheduled to be indicted in Miami on Tuesday, a day before Trump’s 77th birthday.

He and Nauta each face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison if convicted on the most serious charges, namely conspiracy to obstruct justice and charges related to withholding and concealing government documents.

Thirty-one of the indictments accuse Trump of willfully withholding information related to national defense.

He is also accused of conspiracy to obstruct justice; withholding a document or record; fraudulently conceal a document or record; concealing a document as part of a federal investigation; plan to conceal; and false statements and representations.

A criminal investigation was launched against Trump in the spring of 2022 after the FBI was informed that confidential documents were found in the 15 boxes of government records he turned over to the National Records and Archives Administration after months of NARA attempts to recover documents to recover which the authority believed had disappeared.

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By law, Presidents must turn over all government documents to NARA upon leaving office.

According to the indictment, “When Trump left the White House, he had dozens of boxes, many containing classified documents, shipped to the Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, where he resided.”

“Trump had no authority to possess or keep these classified documents,” the indictment said.

The DOJ presents photos of classified documents found at former President Donald Trump’s Mar-A-Lago residence.

Source: DOJ

Trump later suggested to one of his attorneys that the attorney lie to the FBI and a grand jury by saying he didn’t have the documents they were looking for, and he instructed Nauto to move boxes of documents around them from Trump’s own attorney, the FBI and the grand jury, the indictment says.

The indictment alleges that Trump suggested that his attorney hide or destroy documents and that Trump only turned over some of the documents he kept to the FBI and grand jury, while claiming he was fully cooperative.

Trump also arranged for a certificate to be presented to the FBI and grand jury, according to the indictment, which falsely claimed all documents had been produced, even though he knew this was not true.

The indictment assumes that Trump’s trial would last 21 days.

The DOJ indictment includes photos of classified documents found at former President Donald Trump’s Mar-A-Lago residence.

Source: DOJ

Earlier Friday, two of Trump’s attorneys resigned from representing them in the classified documents case and in the criminal investigation related to the 2020 election.

Trump was indicted by a New York state grand jury in late March on falsifying business records in connection with a $130,000 hush money payment his then-attorney Michael Cohen gave to porn star Stormy Daniels just before the 2016 election.

Trump pleaded not guilty in the case, which is scheduled to appear in the Manhattan Supreme Court next March.

Read the indictment against Donald Trump:

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