What if the former president is indicted in New York?

  • If Trump is indicted in New York, he will be treated like any other defendant, but with key exceptions.
  • Trump would be fingerprinted, swabbed for the government’s DNA database and photographed for his photo.
  • But he probably won’t be “walked” in front of the cameras, and handcuffs are also unlikely.

Don’t count on handcuffs.

Don’t expect a dramatic flashbulb ride. But yes, there will be a capture, and fingerprinting, and mandatory DNA cheek — and a plea of ​​”not guilty,” though not necessarily in open court.

If Donald Trump is indicted in New York, as seems increasingly likely, it will be because of his vehement denials of wrongdoing. This week “Truth” said the prosecution is “fraud, injustice, mockery and complete and total weaponization of law enforcement to influence a Presidential Election!”.

He will be treated like any other defendant, but with several key exceptions.

Here are predictions for how this historic event will unfold, courtesy of some of Manhattan’s top defense attorneys, former high-ranking prosecutors and a retired Secret Service special agent.

At exactly what millisecond is Trump officially a hottie?

Trump will be formally indicted once the grand jury signs its indictment, a document listing the charges the former president is alleged to have committed.

That could happen immediately, right after the grand jury votes on indictments.

“That’s called ‘walking it,'” explains Diana Florence, a former criminal prosecutor in the Manhattan District Attorney’s office.

But that leader’s signature could also come days after the vote, Florence said.

“Prosecutors can say, we don’t have the draft indictment ready,” Florence said, especially if the grand jury votes yes on some counts and no on others.

“They can tell the prosecutor to come back two weeks from Wednesday, or something like that,” to sign the revised indictment, Florence said.

However long that signature takes, at that critical moment alone — pen to paper — Trump would become the first former president in history to face criminal charges.

So what will he say?

The consensus among experts, Trump’s defense team and a trail of crumbs left for hungry reporters by star Michael Cohen is this: if there is an indictment, it will likely list multiple counts of falsifying business documents.

These low-level felony charges will likely be related to the 2016 election hush payment to Stormy Daniels. They carry a possible maximum prison sentence of four years. But a judge could also impose a sentence of just zero jail time plus probation.

Can we see it? We can? Please?

Not so fast.

The indictment begins as a sealed document. Ink still wet, it is returned to the district attorney and then delivered under seal to the central clerk, whose office handles Manhattan’s felony dockets.

There, the indictment is assigned a document number, stuffed into a wide, otherwise empty envelope called an indictment jacket, and then tucked away in a locked file where neither Trump nor his lawyers can get to it.

In those early hours and days, only the grand jurors, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, and a select few prosecutors who actually worked on the case would know what was hidden inside that yawning, hypothetical jacket of indictments.

There can always be a leak, of course, somewhere between indictment and indictment, which is the court process where Trump will plead not guilty.

And the DA could always ask the judge to unseal the case early, according to veteran Manhattan defense attorney Ron Kuby, “given the public interest in the case.”

But usually, only in the courtroom, during the trial, will the physical indictment—in stapled, printed form—be handed over to the defense team.

Whenever the judge unseals it — either at trial, or earlier at Bragg’s request — the DA’s office will quickly release PDF copies to the press and post it on the DA’s website. At which point the historic document will blow up Twitter feeds worldwide.

Who is giving Trump the news?

Those would be his lawyers.

“So you, the prosecutor, call the defense attorney and say, ‘OK, he’s been charged and the indictment has been filed,'” Florence said.

“The prosecutor will say, ‘We’re looking at, you know, March 27th,’ or something like that. “How’s that working out for you?” And then you negotiate the date for them to surrender themselves.”

Once the surrender date is agreed upon, “everybody finds out” that Trump has been indicted, even if the indictments themselves remain secret, Kubey predicts.

“Half the DA’s office and their husbands and wives will know as soon as they set a surrender date. All of Trumpville will know,” Kuby said. “Between the two of them, it’ll be out in two hours.”

So does Trump surrender?

That usually happens in indictments, said Karen Friedman Agnifilo, a former assistant general in the Manhattan district attorney’s office.

The defendant is delivered to DA headquarters in Lower Manhattan at a designated time on the agreed-upon date and is immediately turned over to the custody of DA investigators—armed peace officers who are often former NYPD officers.

At that point, Trump, if that’s the case, would be “under arrest,” Friedman Agnifilo explained.

He would be escorted by elevator to the seventh or ninth floor to be booked. DA investigators would take his fingerprints and photograph. His cheek was being swabbed to take a mandatory sample for the New York DNA database. They would get his “genealogical” information.

“There you lie about your height, you lie about your weight,” Kuby said. “I’m six-three and 205 pounds.” You sure are. Hair colour; “Orange”.

A small Secret Service detail would accompany Trump every step of the way — as he arrives, as he’s booked and as he waits for his prints, meaning no outstanding warrants, to come back from the FBI database.

He would be there as he is then escorted into the courtroom, through the court itself and as he leaves.

“The Agency will not abandon its mission,” says Bill Pickle, the former special agent in charge of Vice President Al Gore’s detail.

Pickle predicts that given the long, excellent relationship between the Secret Service and law enforcement in New York — the one city presidents visit most often — all these details will be easily worked out.

“They’ll never let him go, no,” Pickle said of Trump’s detail.

Once his fingerprints come back, Trump, if he were any other white-collar official, would be handcuffed by DA investigators down the courtroom hallway — with the press shouting and filming behind barricades — into the courtroom.

There, he would see the indictment in print for the first time and plead not guilty, or else his lawyers would enter that not guilty plea on his behalf.

Is this how it will go?

It’s a very likely scenario.

Bragg, the district attorney, could well decide that he does this literally, without preferential treatment, and Trump would go from surrender to custody to trial, just like any other defendant.

But nothing about this delivery, booking and deposit will be typical, experts predict.

But they have to arrest him, right? If he has been charged?

Calm down. Not necessarily.

Trump could be impeached without spending a single moment in custody, according to a former top prosecutor in the office of former Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance.

“My strong bet, and that’s what I would do, is that they don’t arrest him,” said the former prosecutor, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to comment on the case.

“Instead, the court could issue him a criminal summons,” an order directing him to appear for arraignment, they said. “He would appear in court and then be printed before or after. Off the cuff.”

Would they do that? “Who knows,” they said. “But logistically, it’s the only thing that makes sense. Some people would argue that he’s being treated differently. OK. He’s different. And that’s unprecedented. I’m not going to arrest him, or, at worst, I’m going to do it behind the scenes. courtroom”.

So, does he still have to come to court?

Again, not necessarily.

“It’s possible they could schedule a virtual claim and go through the reservation process later, which is not typical, but they could do that,” Kuby said.

“The judge would have to agree, the defense and the prosecution would have to agree, and there would have to be some continuity,” Kubey said for Trump to be printed, drawn and swabbed.

“But there is no legal reason why a defendant cannot appear virtually for his arraignment.”

Virtually drive him? What?

I know. The biggest courtroom drama in US presidential history could very well be broadcast on Zoom.

Trump could do it all imaginable from Mar-a-Lago, in a suit and pajama pants.

No handcuffs? Any walks?

All of this would ultimately be Bragg’s call.

But even if Trump has to surrender in person, the Secret Service would likely give the proxy a hard pass.

“This ride is not going to happen,” said Pickle, the former Secret Service special agent. “I’m not going to expose him to people who could hurt him.”

“I guess,” he added, “this will be a much calmer event than you imagine.”

As for letting Trump appear in handcuffs, even left-wing defense lawyers believe that would expose Bragg, a Democrat, to charges of election meddling and political bias.

An image of Trump in handcuffs could also anger Trump’s base.

It would be a bad look all around, Kuby said.

“I mean the man is beloved by 20 percent of the American population. Admittedly they are fascist psychos,” Kuby said.

“But still. Why contribute to the perception of injustice?”

Would Trump be out on bail?

Yes. Trump would almost certainly remain free and likely without bail.

Under New York’s newly reformed progressive bail laws, defendants can only be ordered held on bail if a judge determines they are a flight risk.

“Fortunately, under current bail laws, you can’t consider whether he’s a danger to the community,” said Kuby, an avowed liberal.

“I think nine out of ten lawyers would find that Donald Trump is a clear and present danger, but these woke liberals prevented that from happening with New York’s bail laws,” he added.

“Oh, if only they could think about future dangerousness and the possibility of committing another crime, like they used to,” he joked.

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