Donald Trump faces his third indictment since March over his efforts to challenge the 2020 US election results with conspiracy and obstruction charges.

Donald Trump was indicted on Tuesday over his efforts to upend the results of the 2020 US election, the most serious legal threat yet to the former president as he campaigns to return to the White House.

It is the third criminal indictment of the 77-year-old Trump since March, and charges him with three counts of conspiracy and one count of obstruction.

Trump, the front-runner for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, is already scheduled to go on trial in Florida in May of next year for allegedly mishandling top-secret government documents.

The new charges, two of which carry maximum sentences of 20 years in prison, raise the prospect of Trump being embroiled in more legal proceedings at the height of what is expected to be a bitter and divisive presidential campaign.

The indictment brought by special counsel Jack Smith accuses Trump of conspiracy to defraud the United States and conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, the January 6th, 2021, joint session of Congress held to certify Democrat Joe Biden’s election victory.

Trump is also accused in the 45-page indictment of seeking to disenfranchise American voters with his false claims that he won the November 2020 presidential election.

The White House on Tuesday maintained silence on Trump’s historic indictment.

The indictment mentions six co-conspirators, but none are identified, and Trump, who is to be arraigned on Thursday, is the only named defendant.

Trump lashed out at the special counsel, calling him “deranged” and accusing him of issuing “yet another Fake Indictment” to “interfere with the presidential election.”

“Why didn’t they do this 2.5 years ago?” Trump said in a post on his Truth Social platform.

Miroslava Salazar with AFP