The Manhattan District Attorney has convened a grand jury to decide whether to indict former President Donald Trump. This means that the prosecutor, Cyrus Vance, believes that he has evidence of a possible crime. Whether the crime was committed by Trump himself, or someone close to Trump, or by his company, or all of the above, we just don’t know yet. The Washington Post reports that "The panel was convened recently and will sit three days a week for six months." Vance’s office has been investigating Trump’s pre-presidency business dealings for more than two years now. This investigation relates to acts Trump and his company allegedly did before the Trump presidency, not during. Matters currently being looked into include tax fraud, insurance fraud, and falsification of business records. White collar crimes often take a long time to look into because they are complicated, but it looks like the process is finally moving along.
Former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti had an excellent Twitter thread about the meaning of all of this. Mariotti, speaking from his experience, said that “the mere fact that a special grand jury was empaneled does not mean that any particular person will be charged. It does not necessarily mean that Trump himself will be charged. But it is fair to say that Vance's investigation is far along and that charges are on the horizon.” Mariotti also pointed out that fraud charges would have to come down to state of mind to be proven and that “a slip-up is not fraud." It remains unclear whether the former president will be charged with anything related to this investigation, the one in New York State, or any future inquiries. Forming the grand jury does suggest, however, that Trump may actually finally face some consequences for his alleged wrongdoing.
Sign up for Our Newsletter
Get updates about the policies and topics that matter the most to you. Progressive news directly to your email.