Former President Donald Trump said he will be arrested on Tuesday over allegations that he paid porn star Stormy Daniels to keep quiet about their alleged relationship.
It comes more than six years after Trump’s lawyer paid Daniels a total of $130,000 to hush up the case, with New York prosecutors weighing whether he should face charges. Trump denies the relationship and knowledge of the payments.
Trump claimed on his Truth Social account that the Manhattan DA’s office would arrest him within days and called the investigation “extremely corrupt and political,” describing the alleged hush money payment as “an old, fully exposed fairy tale.”
If Trump’s allegations of an imminent arrest are true, he would be the first former president to face criminal charges. His post came hours after it was claimed that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg was planning to indict Trump next week.
Elon Musk, the world’s richest man, responded to the development on Saturday by saying that if he is indicted, Trump will be re-elected with a landslide victory in the 2024 presidential election. Legal experts say Trump could still be elected president even if he is indicted or Convicted.
Trump’s attorney said the former president continues to deny the substance of allegations of sexual relations with Daniels (pictured with Trump), calling the $130,000 “annoying payment” that the rich or famous sometimes make to hide a distraction.
He has called them ‘extremely corrupt and political’, describing the alleged hush money payment as ‘an old, fully exposed fairy tale’.
It comes more than six years after Trump’s attorney allegedly paid Daniels to keep quiet about the case, with New York prosecutors weighing whether he should face charges.
A Trump spokesperson said he was “rightfully highlighting his innocence and weaponizing our system of injustice”.
“Here we go again — an outrageous abuse of power by a radical DA who lets violent criminals walk while seeking political revenge against President Trump,” said House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
“I am directing the relevant committees to immediately investigate whether federal funds are being used to undermine our democracy by interfering with elections through politically motivated prosecutions.”
Last week, the former president and hopeful in 2024 was called upon to testify before a grand jury in Manhattan, with Michael Cohen testifying Monday.
Cohen served prison time after pleading guilty to two criminal cases, one of which involved the use of campaign funds in connection with Daniels and another woman who allegedly had an affair with Trump.
He said he was acting at his behest and that the payoffs were meant to keep stories of the case out of public knowledge before the 2016 election. Trump has admitted to compensating Cohen
Daniels met with prosecutors on Wednesday to answer more questions in the case, and her attorney, Clark Brewster, said she would also make herself available as a witness in the future, if needed.
Trump claims he will be arrested by the Manhattan DA office.
Elon Musk, who was photographed at the Met Gala in 2022, believes the criminal charges against Trump will help his re-election in the 2024 presidential race.
Cohen also indicated that he gave grand jury testimony that implicated Trump. He testified on Monday for three hours.
Speaking beforehand, he said, “This is all about accountability. He must be held accountable for his dirty deeds.
Speculation that indictments were imminent also increased when Bragg told the Trump team that the former president could testify before a grand jury if he so chose—usually a notice at the end of the process that could mean an indictment is approaching.
Legal experts said Trump could face one of two charges related to the payments, but they also acknowledge that both will be difficult to prove.
He could be charged with falsifying business records if Trump allegedly knew his proxy agreement with Cohen was a sham to facilitate payments. That would be a misdemeanor under New York law unless prosecutors prove the records were falsified to conceal another crime, making it a felony.
This other offense may be that the payments violated state election law because the alleged payment was intended to benefit his election campaign.
Trump could face up to four years in prison for the charges.
But experts say the former president could still be re-elected if he is charged or even convicted over the issue. Trump has already confirmed that he “wouldn’t even consider leaving” the race if indicted.
The US Constitution does not say that a candidate cannot run if he or she has a criminal record. The requirements are simply that the candidate must be a natural citizen at least 35 years of age and have resided in the United States for 14 years or more.
told Kate Shaw, a legal analyst and professor at Cardozo College of Law ABC“Nothing in the Constitution shall prevent individuals convicted of crimes from running for office or serving as President.”
Shaw said any issues are likely to be practical rather than legal, such as imprisonment making the campaign “difficult, if not impossible”.
Daniels met with prosecutors on Wednesday to answer more questions in the case and tweeted her thanks to her attorneys for “helping me in our continued fight for truth and justice.”
Also this week, Trump’s attorney, Joseph Tacopina, said an indictment was “more likely” due to the latest developments.
“But one thing I still cling to is the hope that justice will prevail,” he said.
Tacupina also said he hoped Manhattan office DA Alvin Bragg wouldn’t stoop to the level of Mark Pomerantz, who was looking for a person-fit offense.
Tacopina referred to memos by Mark Pomerantz, former special assistant for the Manhattan District, who led the bureau’s investigation into Trump for a year beginning in February 2021.
In a letter sent to the commissioner of the New York City Department of Investigations last Friday, Trump’s attorney accused Bragg and his predecessor, Cyrus Vance Jr., of conducting a “politically motivated investigation.”
Prosecutors have “armed” their offices, Tacopina writes, “scouring every aspect of President Trump’s personal life and business affairs, for decades, in hopes of finding a legal basis—however elusive, inventive or complex—to prosecute him.” ”
“It’s hard to argue that previous investigations were politically motivated,” Vance said.
“There was no notification, other than illegal leaks from the Justice Department and the DA’s office, to NBC and other fake news companies, that the George Soros-funded, radical left-wing Democratic attorney general in Manhattan had decided to take his witch-hunt to the next level,” a Trump spokesperson said. . President Trump is rightly highlighting his innocence and weaponizing our system of injustice. He will be in Texas next weekend to a huge crowd. Make America Great Again! Trump’s spokesman.
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