On Tuesday, former President Donald Trump pleaded not guilty to 37 charges related to his alleged mishandling of classified documents. The charges, which were brought by a grand jury in Miami, Florida, allege that Trump took classified documents with him when he left office and stored them at his Mar-a-Lago resort.
Trump’s lawyers entered the plea of not guilty during an arraignment hearing in federal court in Miami. The hearing was brief, and Trump did not speak. He was released without bail and ordered to return to court for a pretrial hearing on July 11.
The charges against Trump are the first federal criminal charges ever brought against a former president. They are also the latest in a series of legal challenges facing Trump, who is also facing a civil lawsuit from the House Oversight Committee over his handling of classified documents.
Trump has denied any wrongdoing and has accused the Justice Department of being politically motivated. He has also vowed to fight the charges, saying that he will “never give up” his fight to “clear my name.”
The charges against Trump are a major development in the ongoing investigation into his activities after leaving office. The investigation is being led by Special Counsel John Durham, who was appointed by former Attorney General William Barr.
Durham’s investigation has been focused on whether Trump and his associates obstructed justice during the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. The charges against Trump do not directly relate to the Russian investigation, but they do raise questions about Trump’s handling of classified information.
The charges against Trump are also likely to have a major impact on his political future. Trump has been teasing a possible run for president in 2024, but the charges could make it difficult for him to win the Republican nomination.
The charges against Trump are a sign that the Justice Department is taking the investigation into his activities seriously. It remains to be seen what the outcome of the investigation will be, but the charges against Trump are a major development in the case.