Manhattan jury indicts Trump over secret payments to Stormy Daniels

Manhattan jury indicts Trump over secret payments to Stormy Daniels

NEW YORK — Former President Donald Trump has been indicted in Manhattan over alleged secret money payments to porn star Stormy Daniels, several senior officials with direct knowledge of the case confirmed Thursday.

Trump, who has twice faced impeachment trials in Congress, is the first former president in US history to face criminal charges, and the developments could have significant implications for the presidential election of 2024.

Trump, who has twice faced impeachment trials in Congress, is the first former president in US history to face criminal charges, and the developments could have significant implications for the presidential election of 2024.

Trump, 76, had insisted he would continue to seek the Republican nomination even if the grand jury voted in favor of impeachment. Legally, an indictment does not prevent you from presenting yourself.

It was not immediately clear what time he would be arraigned, or whether notice would be given to the media, given the historical significance and Secret Service concerns associated with the legal proceedings in Manhattan.

Trump’s team had no immediate comment on this latest development.


Over the weekend of March 18, Trump told supporters he was anticipating his own arrest and urged loyalists to “protest, protest, protest” in a social media post. New York City safety plans have been put in place accordingly.

His message seemed designed to anticipate an official announcement from prosecutors and to fuel outrage among his fan base ahead of the widely expected charges. A later post used stronger wording.


All of this was ominously reminiscent of the rhetoric he used shortly before the uprising at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.


Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, whose office has been investigating whether Trump violated state laws in connection with the alleged payments, sent an internal memo earlier to ensure the safety of his staff. Bragg said his office would not be intimidated or condone threats to “the rule of law.”

Still, local law enforcement officials are aware of the potential public safety ramifications and have prepared accordingly, out of an abundance of caution.

This time several investigations and oppositions within his party weigh on him


The grand jury heard from witnesses, including former Trump attorney Michael Cohen, who claims he orchestrated payments in 2016 to two women to silence them about sexual encounters they said they had with Trump a decade ago. earlier.

Trump himself did not testify before the grand jury, although Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg gave him the opportunity to do so.

Trump denies the encounters happened, says he did nothing wrong and described the investigation as a “witch hunt” by a Democratic prosecutor bent on sabotaging the 2024 Republican campaign.

Trump also called Bragg, who is black, a “racist” and accused the prosecutor of letting crime in the city spiral out of control as he focused on Trump. New York remains one of the safest cities in the country.

Daniels and at least two former Trump aides, former political adviser Kellyanne Conway and former spokeswoman Hope Hicks, are among witnesses who have met with prosecutors in recent weeks.


This Trump case marks a major development after years of investigations into his business, political and personal dealings.

Even as Trump pursues his latest campaign for the White House: His first rally is scheduled for Waco, Texas, later this month and he shook hands and took selfies with fans during a public appearance on Saturday night at the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in Tulsa, Oklahoma, there’s no doubt an accusation fueling its longtime detractors.

In addition to the secret money investigation in New York, Trump faces separate criminal investigations in Atlanta and Washington over his efforts to overturn the 2020 election results.

A Justice Department special counsel also presented evidence before a grand jury investigating Trump’s possession of hundreds of classified documents at his Florida estate. It’s unclear when these investigations will end or if they could lead to criminal charges, but they will continue regardless of what happens in New York, underscoring the current severity — and wide geographic reach — of the legal challenges facing the former president faces.

Trump’s message on Saturday echoes one he posted last summer when he announced on Truth Social that the FBI was searching his Florida home as part of an investigation into possible mishandling of classified documents.

News of the search sparked a flurry of contributions to Trump’s political operation, and on Saturday Trump sent a series of fundraising emails to his supporters, including one that read, “I’m not the least bit worried.” .

Following its release, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, a Republican, denounced any plans to impeach Trump as an “outrageous abuse of power by a radical district attorney” who he said was seeking a revenge policy. Representative Elise Stefanik, the third House Republican, released a statement with a similar sentiment.

Ashley Johnson
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