Trump’s historic hush money trial begins in New York

It’s a historic day in New York City as the first criminal trial of a former president and presumptive presidential nominee begins. Donald Trump has faced three civil trials in New York since he left the White House, but this is the first time he faces possible jail time.

Trump is charged with 34 counts of falsifying business records, stemming from reimbursements made to Trump’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen for hush money payments he made before the 2016 election to an adult film star alleging an affair with Trump. The former president has pleaded not guilty and denied the affair with Stormy Daniels.

It’s known as the “hush money” trial, but Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg says this case is about election interference, alleging the $130,000 payment was part of a wider scheme enacted by Trump and his allies from 2015 to 2017 to keep damaging information from voters. 

Prosecutors allege once the Access Hollywood tape became public the campaign was scrambling to quash Daniels’ allegation out of concern of how it would play with female voters. Prosecutors will have to prove that Trump is guilty of falsifying business records with the intent to hide that $130,000 payment.


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