Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Donald Trump Convicted on 34 Counts in Hush-Money Scheme Trial

Former President Donald Trump has been convicted on all 34 counts of falsifying business records in a criminal hush-money scheme aimed at influencing the outcome of the 2016 election.

Judge Juan Merchan has scheduled a sentencing hearing for July 11, marking Trump as the first US president in history to be convicted of a felony.

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The verdict follows less than twelve hours of deliberation by the jury in this unprecedented trial against a sitting president. It presents a precarious political juncture for Trump, the presumptive nominee for the Republican nomination, whose poll ratings have remained stagnant throughout the trial but face potential decline.

Trump's conviction stems from charges of felony falsification of business records, specifically related to his former lawyer Michael Cohen's payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels. These payments were disguised as "legal expenses" in Trump's records, allegedly to conceal violations of New York state election law.

Prosecutors argued that the payments constituted illegal campaign contributions, exceeding individual contribution limits and aimed at benefiting Trump's 2016 campaign. Testimony from 20 witnesses provided evidence of Trump's involvement in plotting with tabloid mogul David Pecker and Cohen to conceal affairs with Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal.

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