Trump can be prosecuted for role in US Capitol riot, judge rules
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The former president is the target of several lawsuits by elected officials and police who accuse him of being directly responsible for the violence perpetrated by his supports when they stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021.
A judge in Washington, DC, ruled that these complaints were admissible on the grounds that Trump's actions that day were "unofficial acts" that "entirely concern his efforts to remain in office for a second term," which the judge said does not fall within the scope of presidential immunity.
"To deny a President immunity from civil damages is no small step," judge Amit Mehta wrote in findings that ran to 112 pages. "The court well understands the gravity of its decision."
At the same time, Trump took to Twitter to criticize his vice president Mike Pence for not blocking certification of Joe Biden's election victory, an act the judge said constituted "tacit agreement" with those who stormed the Capitol.
His role on that day is also being examined by a House of Representatives select committee, which has in its possession hundreds of pages of documents, text messages and testimonies, some of which the head of the probe said Trump had sought to keep hidden.
The billionaire former president has slammed the investigation as a "witch hunt."