Trump indictment unsealed: Former president accused of violating election laws
he indictment against former President Donald Trump was unsealed Tuesday afternoon after his court arraignment in Lower Manhattan.
The indictment accuses Donald Trump of directing three different instances of hush money payments to cover up alleged affairs.
Trump personally entered the “not guilty” peal in the People of the State of New York against Donald J. Trump, Indictment No. 71543-23
Trump was indicted on 34 counts of falsifying business records in the first degree.
They are all class E felonies, the lowest category of felony offense in New York, carrying a maximum prison sentence of four years.
In court, prosecutors said this was a conspiracy that started in 2015 with the $130,000 payment, as part of an effort to promote his candidacy by burying stories ahead of the election.
“The People of the State of New York allege that Donald J. Trump repeatedly and fraudulently falsified New York business records to conceal crimes that hid damaging information from the voting public during the 2016 presidential election,” said District Attorney Bragg. “Manhattan is home to the country’s most significant business market. We cannot allow New York businesses to manipulate their records to cover up criminal conduct. As the Statement of Facts describes, the trail of money and lies exposes a pattern that, the People allege, violates one of New York’s basic and fundamental business laws. As this office has done time and time again, we today uphold our solemn responsibility to ensure that everyone stands equal before the law.”
Prosecutors addressed Trump’s ongoing rhetoric. They handed copies of threatening social media posts to the judge and put them onto Trump’s defense table, specifically citing a baseball bat tweet.
The judge advised both sides – Trump and Michael Cohen — to tamper down their rhetoric.
The judge said he was not imposing a gag order at this point, but he asked both sides to refrain from comments that could lead to civil unrest.
Trump stayed mostly still with his hands steepled or interlaced and looked ahead during the proceedings, which lasted just over an hour.