【中美创新时报2024 年 6 月 1 日编译讯】(记者温友平编译)唐纳德·特朗普将谴责判决只是政治报复。但他说的任何话都无法抹杀陪审团听取了所有证据并判定他所有罪名成立的事实。《波士顿环球报》刊登的加州大学伯克利分校法学院的法学教授兼院长埃尔文·切梅林斯基(Erwin Chemerinsky)的署名观点文章称,特朗普的判决是法治的胜利。以下是该文章全部内容。


周四,曼哈顿陪审团裁定唐纳德·特朗普犯有 34 项重罪,试图影响 2016 年总统大选,这是一个令人震惊且至关重要的提醒,没有人可以凌驾于法律之上——即使是总统或前总统。虽然特朗普一再辩称,他不能在这起或其他针对他的案件中被追究责任,但我们的司法系统证明法律可以而且应该平等适用。

2019 年,纽约大陪审团传唤特朗普查阅其财务记录时,他向联邦法院提出诉讼,称作为总统,他不受此类审查。2020 年 7 月,在特朗普诉万斯案中,最高法院对时任总统特朗普作出了不利判决,并强调大陪审团有权获取每个人的证据,而作为总统并不能免于传票。



但该案已开庭审理,12 名陪审员(按照所有陪审团的方式选出)听取了所有证据,并对所有 34 项指控做出了令人震惊的裁决。他们这样做是因为有压倒性的证据证明特朗普批准向丹尼尔斯支付封口费,非法将款项隐瞒为商业费用,并这样做是为了增加他当选总统的机会。当所有的言辞都被抛到一边时,陪审团的裁决是关于特朗普违反法律的明确证据。


仍有许多问题。特朗普将被判处什么刑罚?34 项重罪指控每项最高可处以 5,000 美元罚款和 4 年监禁,最高可判处 20 年监禁。尽管特朗普之前没有犯罪记录,但陪审团对 34 项指控的决定性裁决以及特朗普明显缺乏悔意可能会导致他被判入狱。如果被判入狱,如果特朗普在 11 月当选总统,会发生什么?这是否会阻止纽约执行判决并可能将他监禁?从未有前总统被定罪,因此无法知道最高法院会做出什么决定。





题图:5 月 30 日,在特朗普大厦,人们在报道前总统唐纳德·特朗普有罪判决时查看了手机。STEPHANIE KEITH/GETTY


Trump verdict: No one is above the law

Donald Trump will decry the verdict as being nothing but a political vendetta. But nothing he says can erase the fact that a jury heard all the evidence and found him guilty on all counts.

By Erwin ChemerinskyUpdated May 31, 2024

The Trump verdict is a triumph for the rule of law.

On Thursday, when a Manhattan jury found Donald Trump guilty of 34 criminal felonies in an attempt to influence the 2016 presidential election, it was a stunning and crucial reminder that no one is above the law — not even a president or a former president. While Trump has repeatedly argued that he could not be held accountable in this or other cases against him, our justice system proved the law can and should be applied equally.

When the New York grand jury subpoenaed Trump’s financial records in 2019, he went to federal court and argued that as president he was immune from such scrutiny. In July 2020, in Trump v. Vance, the Supreme Court ruled against then-President Trump and stressed that a grand jury has the right to every person’s evidence and being president provided no immunity from a subpoena.

After being indicted, Trump argued to the New York state trial court that he could not be prosecuted because he took the alleged actions — writing the checks and falsifying the business records through hush-money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels — after his inauguration as president. The court rightly rejected this and refused to dismiss the case. Trump’s lawyers tried every imaginable argument to have the case thrown out, including repeatedly going to the court of appeals for relief, but there was no legal basis for having the prosecution dismissed.

Trump and his supporters attacked the Manhattan prosecutors, the judge, the judge’s family, and the witnesses in vituperative and harsh language. Some of the most powerful people in this country seemed to be trying to use their power and influence to do all they could to intimidate those involved.

But the case was tried and 12 jurors, chosen in the manner of all juries, listened to all of the evidence and rendered a stunning verdict on all 34 counts. They did so because the evidence was overwhelming that Trump authorized payment of hush money to Daniels, illegally concealed the payments as business expenses, and did so to help his chances of being elected president. When all of the rhetoric is swept aside, the jury’s verdict was about the clear evidence that Trump violated the law.

Trump, of course, can and will appeal. But New York Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan did a superb job under the most difficult of circumstances and the Trump legal team will be hard-pressed to find successful issues for appeal.

There remain many questions. What sentence will Trump receive? Each of the 34 felony charges carries up to a $5,000 fine and four-year prison sentence, with a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. Although Trump has no prior criminal record, the jury’s decisive verdict on 34 counts and Trump’s obvious lack of remorse could lead to a prison sentence. If sentenced to prison, what happens if Trump is elected president in November? Would that preempt New York from carrying out its sentence and possibly imprisoning him? No former president ever has been convicted, so there is no way to know what the Supreme Court would decide.

Trump’s supporters say that this is what makes the prosecution and conviction so dangerous. They say that it is setting a precedent for what is common in some other countries, with former chief executives being tried and convicted. But the message is exactly the opposite, one that is laudable and even essential in a democracy. It is a reminder to all, including those who hold the highest offices, that if they violate the law they can be prosecuted and held legally accountable. Trump was prosecuted and convicted not because he was being politically persecuted while other former presidents were excused but because he showed so little regard for the law.

Trump and his supporters have decried the verdict as being nothing but a political vendetta. They have the constitutional right to say what they want. But nothing they say can erase the fact that a jury heard all the evidence and found Trump guilty on all counts.

The jury’s verdict is historic. Most of all, it is a triumph for the rule of law in this country.

Erwin Chemerinsky is a professor of law and dean of the Berkeley School of Law at the University of California.