Trump and Indictments

Trump Indictments, Part 1: Brief Overview

Trump and Indictments

On March 30, 2023, a New York grand jury indicted former President Donald Trump (R) on thirty-four felony counts of falsifying business records. This made Trump the first former U.S. president to be charged with a crime. He pleaded “not guilty.”

On June 8, 2023, a federal grand jury indicted Trump on thirty-seven felony charges relating to national defense information, withholding or destroying records, and conspiracy. Three more counts were added in a superseding indictment on July 27. On August 1, another federal grand jury indicted Trump on four new felony charges of conspiracy and obstructing an official proceeding relating to the 2020 election. Trump pleaded “not guilty” to all charges in both cases.

On August 14, 2023, a Georgia grand jury indicted Trump on thirteen felony charges including RICO violations, conspiracy, and false statements, each also related to the 2020 election. Trump also pleaded “not guilty” to these charges.

Trump’s reaction has been typical (for Trump). In an official statement after the New York indictment he said, “This is political persecution and election interference at the highest level in history.” Another statement after the federal indictment for documents said that “the corrupt Biden administration” had indicted him over the “boxes hoax,” and a later statement added that “deranged [Special Prosecutor] Jack Smith knows that they have no case” and is trying to “salvage their illegal witch hunt.” Of the four federal election charges, his statement said, “This is nothing more than the latest corrupt chapter” in an effort “to interfere with the 2024 Presidential Election.” In response to the Georgia indictment, his statement accused “radical Democrat District Attorney Fani Willis” of being “a rabid partisan” making “bogus indictments.”

The public reaction has also been typical. Pundits and voters partial to Trump declared him completely innocent. Those who don’t like him declared him guilty beyond all doubt. Few spent any time analyzing the charges, or the laws, or the evidence . . . they just blurted out the predefined opinions that had been assigned to them.

That’s not my style. As I did for the Mueller report and the Trump impeachments, I am offering a detailed written analysis of each indictment. These are based on the information in official documents, available background information, and the applicable laws. These articles will explain the facts as I understand them, then add some informed conjecture and my conclusions.

This post serves as an “index” of the reviews of each indictment:


This post, and the analyses of the different cases, will be updated when new information becomes available. I will include editorial notes in this section briefly explaining all substantial changes. New articles will be added if Trump is subject to any further indictments.

  • August 15, 2023: A new indictment was issued by a grand jury in Georgia yesterday; I have added information about this indictment and now plan to analyze the new charges in part five.
  • August 18, 2023: Part 2 in this series, which deals with the business records case in New York, has been posted. It is now linked from this post.
  • December 15, 2023: Part 3 in this series, which deals with the federal documents case, has been posted. It is now linked from this post.
  • March 25, 2024: Part 4 in this series, which deals with the federal election case, has been posted. It is now linked from this post.
  • June 24, 2024: Part 5 in this series, which deals with the Georgia election case, has been posted. It is now linked from this post.
  • June 24, 2024: Part 6 in this series, which is a summary of the conclusions in parts 2-5, has been posted. It is now linked from this post. The series is now complete, barring any new indictments.


The feature graphic at the top of this article incorporates the photo listed below. It is licensed under a Creative Commons license:

Scott Bradford is a writer and technologist who has been putting his opinions online since 1995. He believes in three inviolable human rights: life, liberty, and property. He is a Catholic Christian who worships the trinitarian God described in the Nicene Creed. Scott is a husband, nerd, pet lover, and AMC/Jeep enthusiast with a B.S. degree in public administration from George Mason University.