A New York grand jury has indicted Donald Trump on allegations linked to a business records investigation related to a “hush money” payment made to adult film star Stormy Daniels. Trump is the first former president in U.S. history to face criminal charges. His attorney Susan Necheles confirmed the indictment. No other details have been released yet.
The specific charge or charges have not yet been made public.
The case stems from a payment made just days before Trump was elected president in 2016. His former attorney, Michael Cohen, arranged a $130,000 wire transfer to Daniels to buy her silence about an alleged affair.
Trump has denied having a sexual encounter with Daniels, and vehemently denied wrongdoing in this case. Trump has accused Bragg of conducting a “political witch hunt.” On March 13, with the grand jury nearing its indictment, Trump’s attorney Joseph Tacopina told CBS News he believed the case has “absolutely no legal merit.”
Cohen met repeatedly with prosecutors and testified before the grand jury in this case for five hours over two days in March. He served time in a federal prison after entering a guilty plea in 2018 to tax evasion and campaign-finance violations in connection with the payment to Daniels.
The indictment comes as Trump faces other potential criminal cases. In Fulton County, Georgia, District Attorney Fani Willis is mulling charges in an investigation into alleged efforts by Trump and more than a dozen of his allies to undermine the state’s results in the 2020 election, which he lost to President Joe Biden. A special purpose grand jury conducted a six-month probe last year and delivered a report with its findings to Willis in January. The majority of that report was ordered sealed, at least until charging decisions are made.
In Washington, D.C., special counsel Jack Smith is overseeing two Justice Department investigations into alleged efforts to interfere with the lawful transfer of power following the 2020 presidential election, and Trump’s handling of sensitive government documents found at his Mar-a-Lago home and possible obstruction of efforts to retrieve them.
The White House declined to comment on news of the indictment.
This is a developing story.
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