Trump Receives Mixed News from New York Courts in Fraud and Criminal Cases

In a series of legal developments on Monday, former President Donald Trump received both favorable and unfavorable rulings from New York courts, impacting his ongoing fraud trial and upcoming criminal case related to the payment made to porn star Stormy Daniels.

The day began with a positive outcome for Trump, as a five-judge panel of New York’s Appellate Division modified the bond required to protect his empire from a $454-million civil fraud penalty. The court reduced the bond by over 60%, from $454 million to $175 million, and granted Trump an additional 10 days to make the payment. This decision, in line with the division’s pro-business stance, provided temporary relief to Trump’s financial concerns. It also indicated that the court might be considering reducing the penalty itself.

However, the tide quickly turned against Trump when Judge Juan M. Merchan presided over a hearing related to the criminal case involving the payment to Stormy Daniels. The judge rejected Trump’s request for more time to prepare his defense, scheduling jury selection to begin on April 15. This decision signaled that Trump’s strategy of delaying the trial was coming to an end.

During the hearing, Trump’s legal team alleged misconduct by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, claiming it necessitated the dismissal of the entire case. Judge Merchan strongly rebuked Trump and his lawyer, Todd Blanche, for making baseless allegations without evidence or legal support. Merchan emphasized that the district attorney had gone above and beyond his obligations, rendering the claims of misconduct unfounded.

The judge’s reprimand not only undermined Trump’s defense but also highlighted a pattern of advancing interpretations of events that differed from the court’s understanding. Merchan’s stern response should serve as a warning to Trump’s lawyers, as credibility before the court is crucial. Furthermore, the judge issued a limited gag order against Trump, indicating his resolve to prevent wild accusations that could taint the proceedings.

With an impending jury trial and a judge who has grown weary of Trump’s tactics, the former president will be compelled to rely on evidence rather than political grandstanding. This position is one Trump has consistently sought to avoid in all his criminal trials.

Author: CrimeDoor

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