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New wrinkle in possible Trump arrest: Report

Then U.S. President Donald Trump surveyed storm damage and met with residents along with Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey. (Shealah Craighead/White House via ZUMA Wire/TNS)
March 21, 2023

Former President Donald Trump is not expected to be arraigned until next week if criminally charged in the Manhattan district attorney’s hush money investigation, an anonymous source told Fox News.

The outlet cited a law enforcement source who said law enforcement is not expecting the former president to appear in court for an arraignment this week, as had been widely anticipated and forecast by Trump himself.

The source did not clarify when an indictment – the formal accusation of a crime – may come, referring only to the arraignment, the initial court hearing when Trump would appear before a judge. Indictments come before arraignments.

News reports had indicated an indictment could come as early as Monday night, as reported by Reuters. But Fox’s law enforcement source said that the Manhattan grand jury, which has been hearing evidence and will vote on whether to indict, still has another witness that will be testifying on Wednesday.

The source also said that the possibility of a virtual arraignment was ruled out by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg. But that possibility also was never seriously considered, according to another unnamed source familiar with discussions on how to handle the possible Trump indictment.

The case against Trump reportedly centers on alleged 2016 attempts to buy the silence of two women who said they had sex with Trump, which he denies. One of those women is adult film actress Stormy Daniels, who Trump’s one-time lawyer, Michael Cohen, has said he arranged a $130,000 hush money payment for on Trump’s behalf.

Fox’s law enforcement source said that on Monday, the Manhattan DA’s office and multiple law enforcement agencies discussed security measures for a possible Trump court appearance. 

Those measures included closing streets, using generator-powered lights, installing barriers, and boosting manpower. The New York Police Department was filmed on Monday putting up steel barricades outside the Manhattan Criminal Court.

Trump, who is now running a third campaign for president, had over the weekend called on his supporters to “PROTEST, TAKE OUR NATION BACK” over the possibility he would be arrested.

This was a breaking news story. The details were periodically updated as more information became available.