Donald Trump has been formally booked by authorities in Georgia over accusations he conspired to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election in the state.
The 77-year-old had his mugshot taken – a historic first for a former US president – and was booked in as inmate P01135809 as he was presented with 13 charges at Fulton County jail on Thursday afternoon local time.
It comes after the region’s District Attorney Fani Willis charged Trump and 18 of his close associates earlier this month.
It is the fourth set of criminal charges to be levelled against Trump since March, when he became the first former leader of the USA in history to be indicted.
During his brief visit to the jail, Trump had his photograph taken, was fingerprinted and had his personal details entered before he was released on bail.
Trump’s motorcade was then seen speeding away from the jail, past a group of supporters and members of the media waiting outside.
Speaking to reporters afterwards as he prepared to board his plane home, the Republican said it was a “very sad day for America”.
Trump also posted on X, formerly Twitter, for the first time since 2021 – sharing his own mugshot. It was the first time Trump has used the social media platform since owner Elon Musk lifted his ban.
Trump accused his political opponents of “election interference”, with the charges coming as he campaigns to return to the White House.
He added: “What has taken place here is a travesty of justice. We did nothing wrong.
“I did nothing wrong and everybody knows that. I’ve never had such support.”
Supporters of the former president gathered outside of Fulton County jail while he was booked in.
Trump’s lawyers and prosecutors had already agreed to a bond of $200,000 (£158,000), along with conditions that include a ban on him intimidating co-defendants, witnesses or alleged victims, including on social media.
The defendants in the case are facing a total of 41 charges related to accusations that they illegally tried to reverse Trump’s defeat in the state, which Joe Biden narrowly won in 2020.
All of the accused have been charged with racketeering, which carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison. Several of the defendants handed themselves in earlier this week, including Trump’s former lawyer Rudy Giuliani.
DOES TRUMP REMIND YOU OF CHURCHILL?
If somebody was asked to compare Donald Trump to another world leader, they would be forgiven if the words “Winston Churchill” didn’t come to mind.
This would be a disappointing outcome for Trump himself who has reportedly tried to mimic Britain’s wartime leader in an effort to cultivate a “tough guy” image.
Trump would reply “like Churchill” when asked what look he was going for during his 2016 presidential campaign, staffers told the New York Times.
They added that this is the reason why he would often squint and scowl in photographs.
This can arguably seen in his mugshot where his lips are slightly pursed as he glares at the camera.
DA Willis said she hoped to get a trial date of 23 October and had given all of the defendants until Friday afternoon to surrender at the jail.
Mr Trump has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.
He wrote on social media earlier this week that he was being prosecuted over what he described as a “perfect phone call” when he asked the Republican secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, to help “find 11,780 votes” for him to overturn his loss in Georgia.
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Trump may have to make a second trip to the state in the coming weeks for his arraignment – when a defendant appears in court for the first time. However, officials said in some cases this can happen virtually if a judge allows it.
Despite the charges, Trump remains the frontrunner to be the Republican Party’s candidate for the 2024 presidential election.
On Wednesday night he skipped a televised debate between eight of his party rivals and instead took part in an online interview in which he questioned whether Mr Biden would be physically capable of running in the campaign.
Among the various criminal charges facing Trump include allegations he kept national security documents at his Florida home when he left office.
He has also been accused of breaking the law over an alleged hush money payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels during the 2016 presidential election campaign.
He claims the charges are all politically motivated.
TRUMP HOPES MUGSHOT INSPIRES HIS SUPPORTERS
For Donald Trump, millions of dollars in fund-raising, no doubt.
It will be a badge of honour, a ‘meme-tastic’ icon to be emblazoned on campaign T-shirts and merchandise.
Within an hour of its release, $34 (£27) T-shirts were already being advertised online with the image and slogan: “Never Surrender”
Clearly, Trump had given it some thought. The hair was in place and the face make-up was on as he scowled down the barrel of the camera.
Donald Trump chose a statement look to define defiance of the process and to inspire supporters to stay in the fight.