Former President Donald Trump is once again in legal trouble as he is hit with a third federal indictment, this time for his attempts to hold onto power after losing the 2020 election. The 45-page indictment, brought by Special Counsel Jack Smith, accuses Trump of spreading false claims of election fraud and obstructing the electoral count to overturn the election results.
The indictment alleges that Trump and six unnamed co-conspirators used knowingly false claims of election fraud to subvert the legitimate election results and change electoral votes in favor of Joe Biden. According to Smith, the attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2020, was fueled by Trump’s lies and aimed at obstructing the government’s election certification process.
If convicted on all four counts, Trump could face a maximum of 55 years in prison. He has been summoned to appear before U.S. District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan in Washington, D.C. on Thursday.
This latest indictment adds to Trump’s legal woes, as he is already facing 40 federal charges in Florida related to mishandling government documents after leaving office. Additionally, he is scheduled to stand trial in New York next year on charges of falsifying business documents in connection with a hush money payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels.
In response to the indictment, Trump’s campaign issued a statement calling it a “witch hunt” and likening it to authoritarian regimes. Trump has consistently denied any wrongdoing and portrayed the charges as politically motivated attacks on him and his supporters.
The criminal cases against Trump have thrust the country into uncharted legal and political territory. The indictment comes amid multiple investigations into the events of January 6 and Trump’s efforts to overturn the election.