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Live updates from the Trump trial: The jury begins deliberating on the verdict after receiving the judge’s instructions

Five key moments from Donald Trump’s hush money trial

Donald Trump’s historic hush-money trial has been handed over to the jury, putting the first-ever criminal case against an American president in the hands of his fellow New Yorkers.

Deliberations began late Wednesday morning after a marathon day in court on Tuesday, when the defense and prosecution presented their closing arguments.

Lawyer Todd Blanche hammered the credibility of Trump’s ex-“fixer” Michael Cohen, the trial’s star witness, calling him the “GLOAT” (or “greatest liar of all time”) and listing ten reasonable doubts about the case against the former. president.

Prosecutor Joshua Steinglass, meanwhile, methodically laid out the chronology of the case during a nearly five-hour speech, piecing together key pieces of “smoking gun” evidence while reminding the jury that the case was about Mr. Trump, and not about Cohen.

The defendant is accused of falsifying company records to conceal a $130,000 payment made to adult entertainer Stormy Daniels in October 2016 to ensure her silence about a sexual encounter she allegedly had with him a decade earlier.

Trump denies both the affair and the allegations and must remain in the courthouse while the jury considers his fate.

Alex Woodward reports live from the trial for The Independent.

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Jury Question 3: David Pecker’s testimony about the Trump Tower meeting

This is what Alex Woodward reported on the jury’s third question about David Pecker’s testimony about his meeting in Trump Tower:

The former CEO of American Media Inc joined Cohen and Mr Trump at a now infamous meeting in August 2015 at Trump Tower in Manhattan, where he was asked “what can I do and what can my magazines do to help the campaign?” help,” Mr. Pecker recalled. on Tuesday.

“I said I would run or publish positive stories about Mr. Trump and negative stories about his opponents,” he said. “I would also be the eyes and ears.”

But when it came to tips about women selling stories about Mr. Trump, Mr. Pecker would “notify Michael Cohen, and he could have them killed in the magazine, or not published, or someone would have to buy them.” . he said.

Read the full report here:

Oliver O’ConnellMay 29, 2024 8:55 PM

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Juror Question 2: David Pecker’s testimony regarding his decision not to finalize life rights for McDougal

This is what Alex Woodward wrote about the jury’s second question about David Pecker’s testimony about his decision not to finalize Karen McDougal’s life rights:

(David) Pecker emphasized that he worked with (Michael) Cohen to purchase the rights to the story from (Karen) McDougal “so that it would not be published by any other organization.”

“We didn’t want the story to embarrass Trump, or embarrass or hurt the campaign,” he added.

When Mr. Trump requested in September 2016 that American Media transfer the rights to Ms. McDougal’s story, Mr. Cohen set up a shell company that sent an invoice for the “agreed upon ‘flat fee’ for consulting services.”

Mr Pecker admits that the transaction is not intended for that purpose at all.

“It was for the lifetime rights to the Karen McDougal story,” he said.

Mr. Pecker told Cohen that the deal fell through after his discussions with counsel about the transaction, Mr. Pecker said.

“He was very, very angry, very upset and actually shouted at me,” Mr Pecker said.

“Michael Cohen said, ‘the boss will be very angry with you.’ I said, ‘I’m sorry, I’m not going any further, the deal is off,’” he added. “He said, ‘I can’t believe it. I’m the lawyer, I’m your friend.’

According to Mr. Pecker, American Media never returned the payment.

Read the full report here:

Oliver O’ConnellMay 29, 2024 8:50 PM

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Jury question 1: David Pecker’s testimony about his telephone conversation with Trump

This is what Alex Woodward wrote in response to the jury’s first question about David Pecker’s testimony about his telephone conversation with Donald Trump.

(Karen) McDougal rejected an initial offer of $10,000 to buy the rights to her story, Mr. Pecker said.

“She said she didn’t want to be the next Monica Lewinsky,” Pecker said. “He felt like she was more interested in American Media buying the story than anyone else.”

Trump then called Mr. Pecker himself, he said.

“I talked to Michael,” Pecker recalled Trump saying at the time. “Karen is a nice girl. …What do you think I should do?”

“I said, ‘You have to buy the story and take it off the market,’” Pecker said. “I believed the story was true. I think it would have been very embarrassing for him and for his campaign.”

Cohen then called Mr. Pecker to negotiate a deal, Mr. Pecker said.

“Who is going to pay for that?” he asked Cohen. “He said, ‘Don’t worry, I’m your friend, the boss will take care of it.'”

A subsequent contract with Ms. McDougal granted her a monthly column on aging and fitness for Star magazine, another for Ok magazine, four posts a month on Radar Online and an agreement that Mr. Pecker’s American Media Inc would provide her with ghost writers, according to an agreement that was shown in court on Thursday.

But it granted the company “limited lifetime rights” limited to “any romantic, personal and/or physical relationship McDougal has ever had with a then-married man.”

Read the full report here:

Oliver O’ConnellMay 29, 2024 8:45 PM

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An anonymous athlete says Trump bragged about having sex with Stormy Daniels at a golf event, the report said

Donald Trump bragged about having sex with adult film star Stormy Daniels during the 2006 golf tournament where they met, according to an unnamed celebrity athlete who played at the tournament in Lake Tahoe, Nevada.

The former president has consistently denied having sex with Ms. Daniels, whose hush-money payments by Michael Cohen ahead of the 2016 election gave rise to the 34 charges he currently faces related to falsified corporate records.

“It was clear to me and anyone who heard him that he was talking about Stormy,” the athlete said, adding that Trump encouraged other celebrities to try to have sex with Daniels, behavior the athlete described as “crass,” course’. and stupid.”

“He said all these things, like, ‘You have to fuck a porn star, it’s incredible,’ and ‘It added 20 yards to my drive today,’” the athlete told The Daily Beast.

The athlete said he did not share his story widely and that prosecutors never approached him. His story appears to be the first publicly reported account of Trump telling people he had sex with Daniels around the time Daniels says he did.

Asked for a response to the athlete’s claims, Trump campaign communications director Steven Cheung incorrectly blamed the athlete’s decision to come forward on President Joe Biden’s political team.

The jury in the criminal trial against Trump started deliberations this morning.

Oliver O’ConnellMay 29, 2024 8:40 PM

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Trump compares himself to Mother Teresa and says she ‘cannot refute these allegations’

Alex Woodward reports from the lower Manhattan courthouse:

“These allegations are falsified. The whole thing is rigged,” he told reporters Wednesday in a hallway outside a 15th-floor courtroom in Manhattan.

“And we have a trial like this where the judge is so conflicted he can’t breathe,” he said. ‘He has to do his job. It is a shame. Mother Teresa was unable to refute these accusations. But we’ll see. We’ll see how we do. It is a very shameful situation.”

Oliver O’ConnellMay 29, 2024 8:20 PM

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The jury has four requests regarding evidence

Judge Merchan is back on the bench: “We received a note.”

It was signed by the foreman at 2:56 p.m.

It contains four requests: David Pecker’s testimony about his phone call with Trump; Pecker’s testimony about his decision not to finalize life rights for McDougal; Pecker’s testimony on the Trump Tower meeting; and Cohen’s testimony about the Trump Tower meeting.

Alex WoodwardMay 29, 2024 8:14 PM

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The jury sent a note

The jury has pressed a buzzer and sends a note to the judge.

Donald Trump is back in court and so is the prosecution team.

Oliver O’ConnellMay 29, 2024 8:08 PM

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Veepstakes: Elise Stefanik files misconduct lawsuit against judge overseeing Trump hush money trial

The chairwoman of the House Republican Conference wrote to Kay-Ann Porter Campbell, inspector general of the New York State Unified Court System, calling for an investigation “to determine whether the required random selection process was in fact followed ” when Judge Merchan handed over the case. filed against Trump last spring by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg.

Oliver O’ConnellMay 29, 2024 8:00 PM

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How long did the Trump jury deliberate?

Oliver O’ConnellMay 29, 2024 7:58 PM

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Trump wrongly claims that the jury does not have to be unanimous

Here’s what Donald Trump posted this lunchtime:

It is ridiculous, unconstitutional and un-American that the highly conflicted, radical left judge does not demand a unanimous decision on the bogus charges brought against me by Soros-backed District Attorney Alvin Bragg. A THIRD WORLD ELECTION INFERENCE HOAX!

And here is our report on the jury instructions:

All twelve jurors must be unanimous in returning a guilty or not guilty verdict.

To find him guilty, the jury must agree that Mr. Trump “personally or by acting in concert with an individual or persons, created or contributed to the creation of false invoices” and did so with the intent to fraud, and that he conspired to influence the national debt. the election by these ‘illegal means’.

Oliver O’ConnellMay 29, 2024 7:45 PM

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