A federal appeals court on Tuesday 6 February, 2024 in a striking fifty seven (57) page- unanimous opinion denied Former President Donald Trump of Presidential immunity.
Former President Donald Trump had said he was immune of all the charges levelled against him which fell within his tenure of office as President.
Donald Trump’s lawyer stood by the fact that a president who is not convicted for impeachment by the Congress must be able to claim presidential immunity. Although the former president was impeached by the House of Representatives, he was never convicted by the Senate.
But the panel of three DC circuit judges made the ruling on the account that a former president is legible to face charges for his actions during his tenure as president and that the public interest in holding a president accountable won’t be placed aside because of a potential “chilling effect” on the presidency.
“We cannot accept that the office of the presidency places its former occupants above the law for all the time thereafter” the opinion says.
“Former President Trump lacked any lawful discretionary authority to defy federal criminal law and he is answerable in court for his conduct “ the judges added.
The former president is now expected to appeal against the ruling which would send the case to the Supreme Court where conservatives hold a 6-3 majority.
Story by Christabel Cobbinah