With Trump newly indicted, here’s what to know about the documents case and what’s next

Three new accusations have been added to the criminal case that was first announced last month against former President Donald Trump for allegedly illegally holding secret documents at his Mar-a-Lago resort. Here is a look at the accusations, the special counsel’s probe, and how Trump’s situation is unique compared to other politicians who have been accused of possessing secret documents:
Trump is facing three fresh allegations, and there is now a fourth defendant in the case. The former president is charged with trying to “alter, destroy, mutilate, or conceal evidence” and with inciting another person to do so, according to the prosecution. They claim that in an effort to thwart the federal investigation into his possession of secret documents, Trump directed a staff member, Mar-a-Lago property manager Carlos De Oliveira, to erase camera footage at his Florida estate.
De Oliveira allegedly conspired to hide the video from investigators with Trump and his valet, Walt Nauta, according to the prosecution. In a third count, Trump is also charged with knowingly withholding information about the nation’s defence in connection with a presentation on military operations abroad. Investigators claim that during a meeting in July 2021 at his Bedminster, New Jersey, resort, Trump showed a confidential document to Mark Meadows, the author and publisher of the memoir about his time as chief of staff.
The original indictment had information regarding the document and the meeting, but none of the counts had previously mentioned them. According to the indictment, Trump returned that paper to the government on January 17, 2022, almost a year after he left office. On 37 counts relating to the improper handling of sensitive documents, Trump was indicted last month. Among other offences, the accusations include counts of making false statements, impeding justice, and holding onto classified information.
According to the indictment, Trump is accused of keeping documents pertaining to “nuclear weaponry in the United States” and “nuclear capabilities of a foreign country,” as well as records of White House intelligence briefings, some of which describe the military prowess of the United States and other nations.
According to the prosecution, Trump tried to hide documents from his own attorneys while they were attempting to comply with federal demands to locate and return records by showing them off to people without security clearances. The most serious offences can result in a 20-year prison sentence. Prosecutors claim that after leaving office in 2021, the former president allegedly displayed a map of a military operation in another nation to a member of his political action committee.The Biden administration’s latest accusations, according to a statement from the Trump campaign, are “nothing more than a continued desperate and flailing attempt” by that administration “to harass President Trump and those around him” and to affect the 2024 presidential election. Trump reiterated his assertion that his actions were “protected by the Presidential Records Act” in an interview with Breitbart News on Thursday night, referring to the supplemental indictment as “harassment.”
At an Iowa GOP event on Friday, Trump and a dozen other Republicans vying for the 2024 presidential nomination were anticipated.
On Monday, De Oliveira will appear in court in Florida. With regard to the initial 38-count indictment, both Trump and Nauta have entered not guilty pleas. It was unclear whether the addition of a new defendant may lead to a postponement because their trial is now set for May 20, 2024, which is far into the presidential nomination cycle and likely far after the Republican nominee is known.
The new accusations “should not disturb” the May trial date, according to prosecutors, who had originally hoped to have the case tried in December. “The Special Counsel’s Office is taking steps related to discovery and security clearances to ensure that it does not,” they wrote in a separate court filing on Thursday. Trump’s attorneys have argued that he cannot receive a fair trial before to the 2024 presidential race.
The National Archives and Records Administration approached Trump’s representatives in the spring of 2021 after realising that crucial records from his tenure as president were missing. White House records must be preserved in accordance with the Presidential Records Act since they are regarded as government property.
In December 2021, a Trump representative informed the National Archives that presidential records had been discovered at Mar-a-Lago. The National Archives removed 15 cartons of papers from Donald Trump’s Florida property in January 2022 and subsequently informed Justice Department authorities that they contained “a lot” of secret information. The Justice Department and FBI issued a subpoena in May of that year for any remaining sensitive materials in Trump’s possession.

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