Trump Found Guilty in Hush Money Trial

...To be sentenced July 11, 2024

Former United States President, Donald Trump, made history, Thursday, when he became the first former American President to be convicted of felony, and the first presidential candidate of a major party, the Republican Party, to be convicted in the middle of campaign for the White House.

The controversial former President was convicted of all 34 felony charges of falsifying his business records and covering a hush money payment he made to an adult film star to influence the 2016 presidential election, which he won.

After a seven-week trial, the jury at a Manhattan court found Trump guilty on all the 34 counts. The jurors, made of 12 ordinary New Yorkers, reached the verdict after deliberating for 12 hours over two days.

The Judge, Mr. Juan Merchan, has set Trump’s sentencing date for July 11, 2024, at 10 a.m. local time just days before the start of the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee.

Each charge may attract four years in prison but some experts are saying that Judge Juan Merchan may sentence Trump to between 6 months and one year.

Legally speaking, the conviction does not stop Trump from being President again. His political fate will be decided by voters in November.

But the Trump team has indicated it would appeal the verdict. If Trump is sentenced to prison on July 11, 2024, he may be on bail till his appeal runs its full course.

A visibly subdued Trump has vowed to fight on, declaring: “This was a rigged, disgraceful trial. The real verdict is going to be November 5, by the people, and they know what happened here and everybody knows what happened here,” Trump said after leaving the courtroom, slamming the presiding judge and the prosecutor who brought the case. “We didn’t do anything wrong. I’m a very innocent man.”

Speaking to journalists after the jury found Trump guilty, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg acknowledged that Trump is a defendant “unlike any other in American history,” but that the verdict was arrived at “in the same manner as every other case that comes through the courtroom doors” – “by following the facts and the law and doing so without fear or favor.

“The 12 everyday jurors vowed to make a decision based on the evidence and the law, and the evidence and the law alone. Their deliberations led them to a unanimous conclusion beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant Donald J. Trump is guilty of 34 counts of falsifying business records in the first degree, to conceal a scheme to corrupt the 2016 election.”

CNN recalled that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, a Democrat, announced charges against Trump in 2023 and presenting the first indictment of a former president, accusing him of falsifying the repayment of his former lawyer Michael Cohen in order to cover up a $130,000 payment Cohen made to adult film star Stormy Daniels to keep her from speaking out about an alleged affair with Trump before the 2016 election. (Trump has denied the affair.)


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