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A grand jury in New York has voted to bring criminal charges against former US President Donald Trump for his alleged involvement in a scheme to pay hush money to adult film star Stormy Daniels. The settlement for Daniels was paid in 2016 through Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, and was allegedly taken from his campaign fund. This is the first time in US history that criminal charges have been brought against a president, either incumbent or resigned. Trump’s specific charges are not yet known, but the indictment is expected to be published in the coming days.
New York jury brings criminal charges against Trump
A grand jury in New York voted to bring criminal charges against the 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump. This is the first time in US history that criminal charges have been brought against a president (incumbent or resigned), Reuters writes, citing sources.
The case centers on a $130,000 settlement for adult film star Stormy Daniels in 2016. Daniels claimed she had a sexual encounter with Trump at a Lake Tahoe hotel in 2006, a year after he married his current wife, Melania. The politician himself denied this. Trump, through his personal lawyer Michael Cohen, paid Daniels money for silence. The money was allegedly taken from Trump’s campaign fund. In fact, this is what the case is based on.
The allegations were the result of an investigation by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg. Specific charges are not yet known, the indictment is likely to be published in the coming days. After that, Trump will have to go to Manhattan for fingerprinting and other procedures.
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In 2018, federal prosecutors looked into Daniels’ payout case, resulting in Cohen being sentenced to three years in prison. Cohen then pleaded guilty to violating campaign finance law, noting that it was Trump who had instructed him to make the payments, but no charges were brought against Trump.
On March 13, 2023, Cohen testified before the Manhattan grand jury investigating Trump.
Trump started talking about criminal charges against him last week. He suggested that he would be arrested and called on his supporters to protest.
No resigning or incumbent US president has ever been prosecuted.
The Stormy Daniels payout case is not Trump’s only problem with the law. Most recently, his company was convicted of tax fraud. In addition, several more cases are being investigated against the 45th President of the United States.
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