" "

Trump attends high-stakes pretrial hearing in New York “hush money” case

0 41

Former President Donald Trump made a notable appearance at a crucial court hearing in Manhattan on Monday, marking a pivotal moment less than three weeks before the anticipated commencement of his criminal trial. The impending trial holds historical significance as it would be the first of its kind in U.S. history.

Initially slated to commence on Monday, the trial revolves around allegations concerning falsified business records linked to reimbursements for a “hush money” payment to an adult film star, as stated by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg. However, proceedings were disrupted in early March following the disclosure of new material pertinent to the case by the Justice Department. Trump has maintained his plea of not guilty to the charges leveled against him.

Entering the courtroom with a solemn demeanor on Monday morning, Trump denounced the prosecution’s efforts as a “witch hunt” and a “hoax”.

The defense team has petitioned for either an extended trial delay of up to three months or an outright dismissal, asserting that Bragg’s office deliberately conducted an insufficient effort to procure the documents required for the case. Prosecutors countered by highlighting their prior request for the documents last year, initially declined by the Justice Department but subsequently provided in response to a defense subpoena.

While the Justice Department refrained from commenting on the matter, the recent disclosure of over 100,000 pages of documents in early March, including bank records and relevant emails concerning a Justice Department investigation into Michael Cohen, Trump’s former “fixer” and lawyer, adds complexity to the proceedings. Cohen, having pleaded guilty to tax evasion in 2018 in a federal case, now stands as a crucial witness against Trump in the New York case.

During Monday’s hearing, Judge Juan Merchan indicated that attorneys would deliberate on “significant questions of fact” regarding prosecutors’ endeavors to secure pertinent documents for Trump’s legal team, a process known as pretrial discovery. Merchan maintained the trial date of April 15 but reserved the option to adjust it pending a ruling on the defendant’s motion subsequent to the hearing.

About Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *