West News Wire: Former President Donald Trump was ordered to submit a bond of $200,000 by a Georgia judge because he is accused of trying to rig the state’s 2020 election results. 

According to court documents, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee authorised the bond agreement on Monday. Ahead of Trump’s announcement that he would turn himself in to Georgian police on Thursday, the arrangement was reached. 

“Are you serious? On Monday afternoon, Trump posted on social media that he will be travelling to Atlanta, Georgia, on Thursday to be ARRESTED by Fani Willis, a radical left district attorney. 

The bond agreement sets out strict rules for Trump’s behaviour in the lead-up to trial. He is barred, for example, from making any “direct or indirect threat” against those involved in the case. 

“The Defendant shall perform no act to intimidate any person known to him or her to be codefendant or witness in this case or to otherwise obstruct the administration of justice,” the bond order reads. 

It further specifies that Trump cannot communicate with any witness or codefendant about the facts of the case except through his legal counsel. The terms of the agreement pertain not only to in-person dealings but also to “posts on social media or reposts”. 

Trump has been known to use his Truth Social platform to criticise judges, prosecutors and witnesses involved in the numerous lawsuits he faces. 

They include Fani Willis, the Fulton County district attorney leading the Georgia case, whom the Trump campaign has called a “ribald partisan” and “corrupt” in online posts. 

On August 14, Willis filed charges under Georgia’s Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organisation (RICO) Act against Trump and 18 other individuals. 

In the indictment, prosecutors claim that Trump and his cronies orchestrated a criminal “enterprise” in order to maintain their hold on power. The RICO Act is frequently used to combat organised crime. 

Trump lost the 2020 presidential election to Democrat Joe Biden, who gained support in crucial swing states like Georgia. But Trump and his allies have continued to argue, without providing any supporting data, that election fraud was rampant. 

The fourth criminal accusation against the Republican leader was filed in Georgia, and it claims that this led to a “conspiracy to illegally change the outcome of the election in favour of Trump.” 

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Trump faces 13 felony charges related to the Georgia indictment, which were tallied together to determine the $200,000 total. 

For his alleged violation of the RICO Act, an $80,000 bond was set. Each of the additional 12 counts including criminal conspiracy, filing false documents and criminal solicitation was given a bond amount of $10,000 a piece. 

Trump has refuted the accusations against him, calling the indictments a “witch hunt” intended to thwart his bid for the president in 2024. 

According to a poll conducted by Emerson College and released on August 19 and showing him to have 56 percent of the party’s support, he is far ahead in the contest for the Republican nomination. 

It is the first time that one of Trump’s indictments has required him to post a monetary bond. Bonds are frequently used as collateral in the US legal system to guarantee that defendants will show up for trial. 

Even though defendants are typically only obliged to cover a portion of the bond, the fees can still be high, especially for those with limited financial resources.

Lawyers for one of Trump’s most prominent co-defendants, Rudy Giuliani, have told a court in a separate defamation case that the former mayor is struggling to pay his bills. US media has also reported that Giuliani appealed to Trump himself for financial help. 

Trump and his co-defendants in the Georgia case face a deadline of Friday to voluntarily surrender to the Fulton County Jail, where they will be booked, a process where police gather fingerprints, photos and personal information to create an arrest record.   

In announcing that he would surrender on Thursday, Trump took the opportunity to once again blast Willis for pursuing the case against him. 

“She campaigned, and is continuing to campaign, and raise money on, this WITCH HUNT,” Trump wrote on Truth Social. “It is all about ELECTION INTERFERENCE!”

Trump is also charged with interfering with federal elections and is the subject of another federal indictment for allegedly handling secret documents improperly. 

Trump was accused of falsifying company records by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg in a state-level investigation involving hush money purportedly paid during his 2016 presidential campaign, making him the first president in United States living or dead to face criminal charges. 

The former president entered a not-guilty plea to the allegations.


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