Former President Trump has been indicted by a Manhattan grand jury. So what is an indictment? Am indictment is just a fancy word for a document that contains criminal charges. The sole purpose of an indictment is to notify the accused of the charges. In simple terms, it is nothing more than a piece of paper sent by a grand jury to an accused. It does NOT mean that a person is guilty.
What is a grand jury? A grand jury is a group of ordinary citizens chosen to hear evidence presented by prosecutors alleging criminal conduct. It is a ONE-SIDED proceeding. The defense does not present evidence or witnesses. At the end of the proceedings, grand jurors are asked by the prosecutor to vote in favor of criminal charges. A majority must then vote to indict a person. If grand jurors vote against the charges, then a “no bill” of indictment is issued.
What happens next for former President Trump? After entering a plea at an arraignment proceeding, the case is then assigned to a trial judge, who will preside over the case. At some point, the case will likely be set for a jury trial, in which jurors will then decide if the prosecution has proven the charges beyond a reasonable doubt.