Trump pleads not guilty to all 37 charges in federal documents case

Trump pleads not guilty to all 37 charges in federal documents case

The hearing was closed to cameras and live broadcasts.

Former US President Donald Trump pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to federal criminal charges that he unlawfully kept national-security documents when he left office and lied to officials who sought to recover them.

Trump's plea, entered before US Magistrate Judge Jonathan Goodman in a federal court in Miami, sets up a legal battle likely to play out over coming months as he campaigns to win back the presidency in a November 2024 election. Experts say it could be a year or more before a trial takes place.

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The hearing was closed to cameras and live broadcasts. Trump's former aide Walt Nauta, also charged in the case, pleaded not guilty as well, the Associated Press reported.

CNN reported Trump was allowed to leave court without conditions or travel restrictions and no cash bond was required. Goodman ruled that Trump was not allowed to communicate with potential witnesses in the case, the network said.

It was the second courtroom visit for Trump in recent months. In April, he pleaded not guilty to state charges in New York stemming from a hush-money payment to a porn star.

Trump is the first former president to be charged with federal crimes.

Supporters wearing Make America Great Again hats and carrying American flags chanted "Miami for Trump" and "Latinos for Trump" as the motorcade paused outside the courthouse. A man could be heard chanting, "USA! USA!"

Authorities had prepared for possible violence, recalling the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, but Miami Mayor Francis Suarez told reporters that there had not been any security problems.

Trump has repeatedly proclaimed his innocence and accuses Democratic President Joe Biden's administration of targeting him. He called Special Counsel Jack Smith, who is leading the prosecution, a "Trump hater" on social media on Tuesday.

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