Judge Considers Fate of Trump’s Hush Money Prosecution in Critical Hearing

Former President Donald Trump’s hush money prosecution faces a crucial moment as a judge contemplates whether the case will proceed and if it will become Trump’s first criminal trial next month. Trump, accompanied by his legal team, is expected to attend the hearing in New York, where they will argue that the indictment should be dismissed due to defective charges and selective prosecution. This hearing marks a significant milestone for Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s case, as it is the first indictment of a former president. Trump has pleaded not guilty to the 34 felony counts of falsifying business records.

The prosecution alleges that Trump improperly recorded reimbursements to his former fixer, Michael Cohen, who had made payments to women, including adult film star Stormy Daniels, to keep quiet about alleged affairs with Trump. Trump vehemently denies these allegations. As the trial potentially becomes Trump’s first criminal case, here’s what you need to know ahead of Thursday’s hearing:

– Trump has been consistently attending his court appearances, even amidst his participation in early presidential nominating contests, where he has achieved significant victories.
– This is Trump’s second day in court this week, following a closed-door hearing in his classified documents criminal case on Monday.
– No audio or video recording will be allowed during Thursday’s hearing, but photographers will have a brief opportunity to capture images inside the courtroom before the proceedings begin.
– Trump will still have the chance to make public statements outside the courtroom, as media outlets will set up video cameras in the hallway.
– Trump’s recent silence on this case, which has flown under the radar, raises questions about what he may say publicly now that he is attending the hearing.

If Trump’s motion is successful, the indictment against him will be dismissed. Trump’s lawyers are urging Judge Juan Merchan to dismiss the case on multiple grounds. The judge may make a final ruling on these arguments during Thursday’s hearing or schedule additional pretrial hearings that could potentially lead to the case’s dismissal.

While some of Trump’s arguments are typical for a criminal defendant in New York, others, such as claims of being selectively targeted for political reasons, are unique to the extraordinary circumstances of this case. Trump’s lawyers argue that the charges against him should be dismissed due to the unprecedented nature of the allegations and the belief that they resulted from political pressure rather than an unbiased assessment of the evidence.

If the judge allows the case to proceed, he is expected to indicate when Trump’s trial will take place. While some defendants succeed in having their cases dismissed during the pretrial motions stage, it ultimately depends on the specific circumstances. If the case proceeds, it will mark the first criminal trial of a former president in U.S. history.

The trial was initially scheduled to begin on March 25, but that date was set before Trump faced charges in three subsequent criminal cases. However, it appears that the hush money trial could proceed as scheduled, as the district attorney has indicated a willingness to let Trump’s federal criminal trials take precedence. Trump’s federal election subversion case, originally scheduled for March 4, has been delayed due to his appeals on presidential immunity claims.

Author: CrimeDoor

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