Former President Donald Trump has been indicted on federal charges from a months-long investigation led by Special Counsel Jack Smith.
In the still-sealed indictment, Trump is listed as a criminal defendant and charged with at least seven counts involving conspiracy, illegal retention of classified government material, and obstruction of justice. The former president has been ordered to appear in federal court in Miami on Tuesday.
President Trump announced the indictment on Truth Social, his social media platform. Sources say federal prosecutors informed the former president’s attorneys of the indictment only a short time before he revealed it.
“The corrupt Biden administration has informed my attorneys that I have been Indicted, seemingly over the Boxes Hoax, even though Joe Biden has 1850 Boxes at the University of Delaware, additional Boxes in Chinatown, D.C., with even more Boxes at the University of Pennsylvania, and documents strewn all over his garage floor where he parks his Corvette, and which is “secured” by only a garage door that is paper thin, and open much of the time,” said Trump on Truth Social.
The former president said he has “been summoned to appear at the Federal Courthouse in Miami on Tuesday, at 3 p.m.”
This mark the second time Trump has been indicted this year. He pleaded not guilty in April after being charged by Alvin Bragg, Manhattan District Attorney, on 34 felony counts of falsifying business records in the first degree.
“I never thought it possible that such a thing could happen to a former President of the United States, who received far more votes than any sitting President in the History of our Country and is currently leading, by far, all Candidates, both in Democrat and Republican in Polls of the 2024 Presidential Election,” posted Trump. “I AM AN INNOCENT MAN!”
He added, “This is indeed a DARK DAY for the United States of America. We are a Country in serious and rapid Decline, but together we will Make America Great Again!”
Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Special Counsel Smith in November 2022 to investigate former President Trump’s alleged improper holding of classified records at his Florida Mar-a-Lago home.
Since the FBI conducted the unprecedented raid on the private residence of the former president in August of 2022, the Justice Department has been investigating. Fifteen boxes with “identified items marked as classified national security information within the boxes” were referred to the Justice Department.
Allegedly, the boxes contained “classified national security information,” including official correspondence between foreign heads of state and Trump.
Last year, the former president said the National Archives did not “find” the documents but that they were “given upon request.” Sources close to Trump said he was fully cooperating and there was “no need” for the raid.
Classified material reportedly confiscated and removed from Mar-a-Lago by the FBI in August included a letter from Kim Jong Un, a letter from former President Obama to Trump, a cocktail napkin, and a birthday dinner menu.
The indictment follows locating of classified documents in President Joe Biden’s office and garage
The Trump indictment follows the discovery of classified records in President Biden’s office at the Penn Biden Center last year. The documents were from his time serving as vice president during the Obama administration and his tenure in the Senate.
Attorney General Merrick Garland chose U.S. Attorney John Lausch to review classified records at the office at the time. In December, additional documents were located in the president’s Wilmington, Delaware home. However, the discoveries were not made public until this year.
AG Garland later appointed U.S. Attorney Robert Hur as special counsel to investigate Biden’s improper retention of classified records. Attorney Hur took over the DOJ investigation from Lausch.
In the meantime, classified records were located at the home of former Vice President Mike Pence in Indiana. Last week, reports surfaced that the Justice Department had completed its investigation into the matter, and Pence will not be charged. The status of Biden’s special counsel investigation remains unclear.
Special Counsel Smith also took over the Justice Department’s investigation into the January 6 incident at the Capitol. In the role, he examined whether former President Trump or other officials interfered with the peaceful transfer of power after the 2020 election, including the Electoral College certification of votes that day.