Former President Donald Trump is expected to be arraigned on about 30 charges in New York tomorrow. ·
via: Yahoo! News
A New York City Police arrest report summarizing the charges against Trump will then be prepared and entered into the court system before he is led into a courtroom to be formally arraigned on the charges, none of which are misdemeanors.
But, the source said, Trump will not be put in handcuffs, placed in a jail cell or subjected to a mug shot — typical procedures even for white-collar defendants until a judge has weighed in on pretrial conditions. Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office, which has been consulting with the Secret Service and New York City court officials, concluded that there was no reason to subject the former president to handcuffs or a mug shot.
The stated reason for handcuffing defendants is on the grounds that the suspect might be a flight risk or a threat to the district attorney or court personnel, neither of which were judged to be relevant to the handling of a former president protected at all times by a phalanx of Secret Service agents.
The charge of falsification of business records is normally prosecuted in New York state as a misdemeanor. But Bragg’s office bumped up all the charges to Class E felonies — the lowest level of felonies in the New York State penal code on the grounds that the conduct was intended to conceal another underlying crime, according to the source.
Under the New York State penal code, a conviction for the Class E felony of falsifying business records can result in a prison term of up to four years. But as a practical matter, that seems extremely unlikely. “No one gets jail time for that as a first offender,” said a New York law enforcement official.
The evidence for the underlying crime that escalated Trump’s alleged misdemeanors to felonies is still not clear and won’t be until the indictment is unsealed on Tuesday. But it is believed to relate to the payment of $130,000 in hush money to porn star Stormy Daniels during the closing weeks of the 2016 election to conceal an extramarital encounter with Trump.