Judge serves up reminder of what Donald Trump is facing upon indictment

When Donald Trump gets indicted, he’ll ask the judge to release him on bail or his own recognizance. In the criminal cases against him in Manhattan and Fulton County, he’ll likely be granted that request, because he has no criminal record and the charges against him are nonviolent. The DOJ case may be a different matter, if it includes Espionage Act charges. But in at least two out of these three cases, Trump will very likely get bail. Not that it’ll necessarily work out well for him.


When a judge allows a defendant to stay out of jail while awaiting trial, the judge can assign various restrictions. Trump can be ordered to check in with a court officer every day, get advance approval for interstate travel, and be barred from publicly discussing the case against him. If Trump then violates any of those restrictions, the judge will promptly haul him in apply tighter restrictions, which can ultimately build up to pretrial incarceration.


We got a good reminder of this when FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried tried violating his pretrial conditions. The judge in the case responded today by taking nearly all of Bankman-Fried’s internet access away. That’s how these things go. So if Trump wants to keep playing games by posting images of himself violently attacking prosecutors and such, then so be it. He’ll soon find out the hard way that criminal defendants face a swift reduction in pretrial privileges when they pull that kind of crap.

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