See where the big Trump cases stand in the months leading to the election
Updated February 28, 2024 at 6:13 PM ET
Former President Donald Trump faces 91 criminal charges across four cases. He has pleaded not guilty to all the charges, and the GOP front-runner claims the investigations are partisan efforts to interfere with his effort to regain the White House.
The timing of some cases is now intertwined with others, and it's still unclear how things will shake out on the election-year calendar. Defendants in criminal cases generally must attend every stage of a trial. Trump's lawyers are hoping to get charges dismissed – or pushed until after Election Day.
Here's where things stand:
Federal election interference case
Number of charges: 4
Case background: A 45-page indictment lays out the case that Trump and those around him committed crimes as the former president scrambled to try to hold onto power after losing the 2020 election. It comes after the Justice Department's investigation into the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, one of the most sprawling and complex investigations in U.S. history.
Trump has publicly refused to acknowledge the results since election night, when he took the stage at his campaign headquarters and claimed that the election was being stolen through fraud. In the weeks following the election, Trump's campaign pursued dozens of lawsuits in states where Trump lost.Courts repeatedly rejected the Trump team's election fraud claims, but he continues to claim even now that he was the rightful winner.
Leading up to Jan. 6, Trump and his allies pressured then-Vice President Mike Pence not to certify the 2020 election results, and urged his supporters to "fight like hell" to stop Congress from certifying the result.
Meanwhile, Trump advisers were also pursuing a fake elector scheme, pushing Republican officials in states like Arizona, Wisconsin and Georgia to put forward an alternate slate of electors even though Biden had won there.
Trump spoke with his supporters during a rally in the hours leading up to the mob taking over the U.S. Capitol. In his speech, he told the thousands present "we must stop the steal."
As part of Trump's defense in the case, he's arguing he's immune from federal prosecution related to acts as president. The trial did have a March 4 start date, but that's been delayed as those immunity claims — now at the U.S. Supreme Court — are litigated.
New York hush money case
Number of charges: 34
Case background: With this case, Trump became the first former president in United States history to be criminally indicted. The grand jury voted to indict Trump in March on 34 felony counts of business record falsification.
Allegations in this case go back to before Trump was elected president. They are tied to hush money payments made before the 2016 elections to the adult film star Stormy Daniels to cover up an alleged affair.
Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford, has said that she and Trump had an affairin 2006. Following the launch of Trump's campaign in 2016, Daniels offered to sell her story to gossip magazines. In October, National Enquirer executives friendly to Trump flagged this to Trump's then-personal attorney, Michael Cohen.
Cohen agreed to pay $130,000 to Daniels to keep her silent. Her attorney received this money less than two weeks before the election. Cohen was later reimbursed $420,000 after Trump was elected president — which Trumphas admitted to doing to pay off Daniels. Trump has long maintained he never had an affair with Daniels.
According to court records, executives with the Trump Organization categorized the reimbursementsas a "retainer" for "legal services."
One of Trump's attorneys called the decision to prosecute the former presidentas "political persecution." Trump himself has called District Attorney Alvin Bragg a racist for pursuing this case.
Federal classified documents case
Number of charges: 40
Case background: Trump has pleaded not guilty to allegedly storing dozens of top-secret government documents at his Florida resort and then refusing to hand them over to the FBI and the National Archives.
Federal prosecutors allege Trump had a direct hand in packing classified documents when he left the White House in 2021, that he then bragged about having these secret materials and pushed his own attorney to mislead federal law enforcement about what kind of documents he had in his resort.
The trial is set to begin on May 20, 2024 — at the tail end of the Republican presidential primary process. Trump's legal team will likely continue working to get the trial pushed back until after the 2024 presidential election.
Trump's legal team will likely continue working to get the trial pushed back until after the 2024 presidential election.
Two other individuals have been charged in the case.
One is Trump aideWalt Nauta, a Navy veteran and former White House valet to Trump. He pleaded not guilty in early July to charges that he conspired with the former president to withhold classified documents.
The other is Carlos de Oliveira, who was Trump's property manager at Mar-a-Lago. He was charged in a superseding indictment with four counts, including conspiracy to obstruct justice, false statements and destruction of evidence. Prosecutors say de Oliveira conspired with Trump to destroy security footage to obstruct the investigation.
All three defendants have pleaded not guilty.
Georgia 2020 election interference case
Number of charges: 13
Case background: In August, Trump and 18 of his allies were indicted for attempting to overturn the 2020 election results in the state.
The criminal investigation in Fulton County, Ga., which is home to Atlanta, was started by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis after the publicationof a phone call in January 2021. In it, Trump is heard pressuring Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to "find" enough ballots in support of Trump to flip the state to him. Raffensperger refused.
Trump has denied wrongdoing and still baselessly maintains there was large-scale voter fraud in Georgia during the 2020 presidential election.
Four of the 19 defendants have since pleaded guilty and agreed to testify. Trump is facing 13 criminal counts including soliciting a public official to violate their oath.
Willis used the state's Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) Act — a statute normally used for mob bosses and gangs — arguing the collective effort to meddle in the election was part of a criminal enterprise.
Court documents list a series of acts allegedly made by Trump and his co-defendants in their efforts to change election results — including harassing an election worker and attempting to persuade Georgia lawmakers to appoint new electors favorable to Trump.
Trump and other codefendants are attempting to have the case dismissed after Willis admitted to a personal relationship with a lead prosecutor on the investigation.
14th Amendment cases
These cases focus on a Civil War-era constitutional clause that activists and legal scholars have said should disqualify Trump from holding office again.
They argue that Trump violated Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, which bars from office anyone who "engaged in insurrection or rebellion" against the United States, on Jan. 6, 2021. Two states – Colorado and Maine – removed Trump from the primary ballot for this reason, decisions the former president is challenging.
Supreme Court justices appeared skepticalof the effort to disqualify Trump from Colorado's state primary ballot when they heard the case in early February. The plaintiffs argued that Trump's actions – that he allegedly engaged in an insurrection to try to cling to power after he lost the 2020 presidential election to Joe Biden – automatically disqualify him from office. Trump's lawyers counter that the case against him is one of overreach.
Trump's recent civil lawsuits
Since the start of 2024, civil lawsuits involving Trump have resulted in rulings ordering him to pay more than $430 million:
New York AG Letitia James' suit against Trump for alleged fraud
Ruling: A New York judge on Feb. 16 orderedTrump and his flagship organization to $355 million in a civil fraud case.
The ruling hands a win to New York Attorney General Letitia James, who sued Trump and his associates after a three-year investigation. The case accused them of knowingly committing fraud by submitting statements of financial condition that inflated the value of their properties and other assets.
Not long after the trial started, the judge in the case ordered that Trump, his eldest sons and his business associates had committed fraud. Trump's legal team argued that Trump and his associates had nothing to do with the creation of the fraudulent statement condition and, regardless, there is no victim. Trump has called the case, without evidence, politically motivated.
E. Jean Carroll case
A New York jury ordered Trump to pay a total of $83.3 million to writer E. Jean Carroll for ruining her credibility as an advice columnist.
In 2019, Carroll first publicly came forward saying Trump had raped her in a department store dressing room in the 1990s when Trump was known as just a businessman. The accusation, which was detailed in her book, was first previewed in a New York magazine article. After the article's publication, Trump issued two statements in response to reporters, including one in which he outright denied her claim and said she was "not my type."
Carroll then sued Trump for defamation, arguing that his comments ruined her reputation as a trusted source in the media, and resulted in a slew of insults and threatening messages, emails and comments to her social media accounts.
This is the second time Trump has been ordered pay Carroll; last year he was mandated by a jury to pay $5 million for a separate instance of defamation.
In response to the Jan. 2024 ruling, the Trump 2024 campaign issued a statement arguing, without offering evidence, that the trial is a "political weapon."
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