1968 Wharton graduate and former President Donald Trump was indicted Thursday afternoon on 37 federal criminal charges related to classified documents found at his Mar-a-Lago estate.
Trump is the first former president to face federal charges, and is expected to be arraigned in federal court in Miami on Tuesday afternoon. Trump is being charged with violating national security laws and participating in a conspiracy to obstruct justice, according to a statement by Special Counsel Jack Smith.
In a statement Friday afternoon, Smith said that the indictment was voted by a grand jury of citizens in the Southern District of Florida. He encouraged the public to read the full indictment, which was unsealed Friday, to understand "the scope and the gravity of the crimes charged."
"It is very important for me to note that the defendants in this case must be presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law," Smith said in his remarks.
He added that his office would "seek a speedy trial...consistent with the public interest and the rights of the accused."
Trump allegedly brought the sensitive documents with him when he left office in 2021. “Hundreds” of documents marked classified were discovered at the Palm Beach, Fla. Mar-a-Lago estate, Trump's primary residence, in an August 2022 FBI raid. The raid was reportedly greenlit by federal magistrate judge and 1987 University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School graduate Bruce Reinhart.
According to public filings in the case, Trump prevented efforts by the National Archives and Records Administration and the United States Department of Justice to re-obtain the sensitive government records taken from the White House.
While the indictment was immediately made public, Trump confirmed it in a series of posts on Truth Social. In a video posted Thursday evening, he said in response to the charges, “I'm an innocent man. I’m an innocent person.”
Special Counsel Jack Smith’s office is also continuing an investigation into Trump’s actions surrounding the 2020 election, specifically his efforts to maintain his office after an election loss and how that led to the Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the U.S. Capitol.
Thursday's indictment is the second filed against Trump this year. In March, a Manhattan grand jury voted to indict Trump on charges related to hush-money payment made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels during the 2016 presidential campaign by Trump’s lawyer.