Sol Wachtler, a former chief judge of the New York State Court of Appeals, once famously remarked that grand juries were so easily swayed that they would “indict a ham sandwich” if a prosecutor requested it. Many times, there is truth to this. But an indictment does not end the process of determining guilt or innocence. It begins it.
Following indictment, criminal defendants can question the validity of the charges, the methods used to acquire the evidence and the evidence itself. They can seek to dismiss a criminal indictment and, if unsatisfied with the ruling, appeal it all the way to the Supreme Court.
The grand jury system has been employed in hundreds of thousands of cases involving all manner of crimes committed by all manner of people. All, that is, except one: the president.