Spread the love

Trump's first criminal conviction may be his last

Photo: Seth Wenig Associated Press New York prosecutor Alvin Bragg had a modest triumph Thursday evening after the verdict. “I did my job. We did our job,” he soberly commented.

Selim Saheb Ettaba – Agence France-Presse in Washington

Posted at 5:42 p.m.

  • United States

History will record that the New York prosecutor succeeded where his colleagues failed: securing a criminal conviction for Donald Trump. While admittedly less glamorous than electoral interference or the withholding of classified documents, this case is likely to be the only one tried before the presidential election.

The prosecutor who prosecuted it, Alvin Bragg, 50, was modestly triumphant on Thursday evening after the verdict. “I did my job.” “We did our job,” he said soberly.

“The only voice that matters is the jury, and the jury has spoken,” Bragg said, noting the 12 jurors' unanimous decision to find Donald Trump “guilty of 34 counts of aggravated false accounting to conceal a conspiracy to subvert the 2016 election.”

Judge Juan Merchan set sentencing for July 11.

An indisputable revenge for the man who in April 2023 became the first prosecutor to criminally prosecute a former American president. At the time, most legal commentators pointed to legally flawed proceedings and venial accusations compared to other investigations targeting Donald Trump and many of them did not give up.

“A year ago, most people like me would have said that this was the case least likely to come to trial, that it was probably the least important,” admits to the 'AFP former federal prosecutor Randall Eliason, professor of criminal law at George Washington University.

Especially since Alvin Bragg neither displays the solemn austerity of special prosecutor Jack Smith nor the sense of biting repartee of prosecutor Fani Willis.

The first is investigating federal charges against the former Republican president for unlawful attempts to reverse the results of the 2020 election and for withholding classified documents after he left the White House. The second is leading the charge against him and 14 others in the key southeastern state of Georgia for related election interference in 2020.

Read also

  • Donald Trump wants to turn his guilty verdict into gold
  • Donald Trump has been found guilty, and now?
  • Donald Trump found guilty across the board at his criminal trial

« Simpler file »

Prosecutions that are much more serious than in the New York case, since Donald Trump was no longer a simple candidate, but either an incumbent president or a former president.

But that is precisely what delayed a trial in the three other cases, explains Randall Eliason.

“The others raise more complicated questions about his indictment for what he did while he was president, or after,” he specifies.

“In that respect, this was a much simpler case, which allowed it to move more quickly, since it did not involve a lot of difficult constitutional questions,” adds the expert.

“It is not so much that this one moved quickly, but that the other three got bogged down by different reasons,” he concludes.

Through appeals, the lawyers of the Republican candidate in the November 5 election against his Democratic successor, Joe Biden, managed to postpone the other three trials indefinitely.

“The most important trial would be the one concerning electoral interference” at the federal level, emphasizes on his blog the electoral law specialist Richard Hasen, calling the procedure in New York a “relatively minor case”.

“And this trial has very little chance of being held before the election as long as the Supreme Court drags on ruling on his appeal for immunity,” he laments.

This procedure is suspended until the Supreme Court with a conservative majority rules on the criminal immunity invoked by Donald Trump as ex-president.

The country's highest court is not expected to decide before June, or even July. The nine judges appeared in April to be impervious to arguments in favor of absolute criminal immunity for a former president, but the date as well as the wording of their decision could definitively compromise the holding of the trial before the election.

If he were elected again, Donald Trump could, once inaugurated in January 2025, order the abandonment of federal proceedings against him.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116