Have you seen a mugshot of former president Donald Trump? It’s completely fake—at least it’s fake at the time of this writing. Because after news broke of Trump’s indictment on felony charges on Thursday social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook were flooded with fake images purporting to show Trump’s mugshot. But none of them are real.
A grand jury in Manhattan voted to indict Trump on Thursday over an alleged hush money payment in the weeks leading up to the 2016 presidential election. The payment of $130,000, which was paid through Trump’s then-fixer Michael Cohen, was being investigated for potential campaign finance violations. Cohen pleaded guilty to tax evasion charges in 2018 and served time in prison.
It’s not clear yet what the exact charges against Trump will be since the indictment is currently under seal. But any mugshots you’re seeing right now are totally fake, along with any photos purporting to show Trump being arrested.
Earlier this month, someone created several photo-realistic images of Trump being detained by police using the AI-image creator Midjourney. But those are fake too.
It’s widely expected that when Trump is arrested, either after he surrenders or is picked up by the authorities, he’ll have to be fingerprinted and have a mugshot taken. But Trump’s lawyers have reportedly been negotiating with prosecutors in an effort to not have any mugshot publicly released when it really does happen. We’ll see how successful that campaign has been.
Some of the fake images include both a head-on and profile shot, as you can see below. But that image is also completely fake.
It’s not clear whether any potential Trump mugshot will include both a head-on and profile photo.
Historically, Trump doesn’t have a problem with AI-created images. The former president even shared an AI-created image of himself recently on Truth Social. The image, which is fake and has many of the hallmarks of fakery, showed Trump praying. But his right foot is positioned behind his left foot.
Trump released a statement on Truth Social on Thursday evening, complete with a misspelling of the word “indicted” as “indicated.”
“These Thugs and Radical Left Monsters have just INDICATED the 45th President of the United States of America, and the leading Republican Candidate, by far, for the 2024 Nomination for President,” Trump wrote on Truth Social.
But he didn’t stop there. And Trump decided to go with all-caps for the rest of his unhinged statement.
“THIS IS AN ATTACK ON OUR COUNTRY THE LIKES OF WHICH HAS NEVER BEEN SEEN BEFORE. IT IS LIKEWISE A CONTINUING ATTACK ON OUR ONCE FREE AND FAIR ELECTIONS. THE USA IS NOW A THIRD WORLD NATION, A NATION IN SERIOUS DECLINE. SO SAD!” Trump wrote.
Trump will still be able to run for president in 2024 even after he’s arrested, and would still be eligible to run on the off chance he’s sent to prison. But that seems unlikely, but you never know. Stranger things have happened—like the time Trump promised to build futuristic cities with flying cars.
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