This article is from the source 'guardian' and was first published or seen on . The next check for changes will be

You can find the current article at its original source at https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/apr/15/trump-hush-money-trial

The article has changed 42 times. There is an RSS feed of changes available.

Version 29 Version 30
Trump’s hush-money trial: here’s what’s happened in the case so far Trump’s hush-money trial: Michael Cohen’s first day of testimony at a glance
(3 days later)
Catch up on latest news out of Donald Trump’s criminal trial for hush-money payments to adult film star Stormy DanielsCatch up on latest news out of Donald Trump’s criminal trial for hush-money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels
Donald Trump is the first former US president to be tried on criminal charges – and could face prison if convicted. Trump allegedly falsified the financial transaction behind the $130,000 hush-money payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels. He denies 34 felony counts of falsifying business records in spring 2023.Donald Trump is the first former US president to be tried on criminal charges – and could face prison if convicted. Trump allegedly falsified the financial transaction behind the $130,000 hush-money payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels. He denies 34 felony counts of falsifying business records in spring 2023.
Here’s what you need to know about the case and what’s happening today:Here’s what you need to know about the case and what’s happening today:
10 May: at a glance 13 May: what happened today
Donald Trump arrived at the courtroom with apparent frustration, after sitting through two days of testimony from the adult film actor Stormy Daniels. The former president’s demeanor in the hallway suggested that his mood had soured since Daniels provided embarrassing details about their alleged sexual encounter. Donald Trump’s former fixer Michael Cohen took the stand on Monday. Cohen is core to the case against Trump, as he is accused of shuttling $130,000 to the adult film actor Stormy Daniels days before the 2016 election in exchange for her silence about an alleged sexual encounter with Trump 10 years prior.
Here’s a recap Daniels’ testimony on Tuesday of an alleged sexual liaison with Trump some 20 years ago as well as how Trump’s lawyers sought to discredit and undermine her testimony on Thursday. Prosecutors contend Trump’s repayment of Cohen was criminal because he listed the reimbursements as legal expenses. Cohen’s testimony is crucial in establishing whether Trump knew the repayment scheme would be logged in the Trump Organization’s books as “legal expense”, and that the false entries were in violation of election law.
Judge Juan Merchan denied a Trump team subpoena seeking records from Mark Pomerantz, a former Manhattan prosecutor who worked on the hush-money case until resigning in frustration. Cohen said he first met Trump through Trump’s Donald Jr. Eventually, Cohen would work as Trump’s special counsel for 10 years, adding: “I would only answer to him.”
The defense resumed cross-examination on Friday morning of Madeleine Westerhout, Trump’s former executive assistant and director of Oval Office operations in the White House. Prosecutor Susan Hoffinger worked to establish that Cohen was effectively Trump’s right-hand man. “It was whatever concerned him, whatever he wanted,” Cohen said.
Westerhout testified that Trump was “very upset” about the Wall Street Journal’s 2018 story about the hush money deal with Daniels. Hoffinger also tried to convey that Trump was well aware of workings at the office undermining a potential defense argument that he was distracted when signing checks.
Several custodial witnesses who testified about phone records and Trump’s social media posts followed Westerhout’s testimony on Friday. Cohen testified about a meeting with American Media Inc publisher David Pecker in summer 2015, shortly after Trump announced his presidential candidacy, in which prosecutors say Pecker, Cohen and Trump hatched a catch-and-kill plan to bury negative press about the then candidate.
The jury was once again shown text messages between Daniels’ manager Gina Rodriguez and then National Enquirer editor Dylan Howard about Daniels’ claim that she had had sex with Trump. Cohen said that in the fall of 2015, he’d heard that a former Trump Tower doorman said Trump had a “love child” and Cohen wanted Trump’s direction on what to do. “He told me to make sure that the story doesn’t get out you handle it.” Cohen said he worked with Dylan Howard of the National Enquirer, and Pecker, and that Cohen would pass updates “immediately” to Trump.
Court is expected resume on Monday morning, and the prosecution has said they expect to call two more witnesses. Michael Cohen, Trump’s consigliere turned key prosecution witness, is expected to take the stand on Monday. Cohen said he was present at a 2016 conversation between Trump and Pecker, during which Pecker said: “It’s going to cost him $150,000 to control the story, to which Mr Trump replied: ‘No problem, I’ll take care of it.’”
Trump’s attorneys requested Merchan implement a gag order for Cohen, who has posted about Trump on social media in recent weeks. In response, Merchan told prosecutors to inform Cohen “that the judge is asking him to refrain from making any more statements” about the case or about Trump. Cohen said in 2016, he learned an agreement had been reached with Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model, for $150,000. Trump’s reaction to the agreement was: “Fantastic! Great job!” Pecker then wanted to know “when he should anticipate receiving, being paid back the $150,000”, Cohen said.
Donald Trump arrived at the courtroom with apparent frustration, after sitting through two days of testimony from the adult film actor Stormy Daniels. The former president’s demeanor in the hallway suggested that his mood had soured since Daniels provided embarrassing details about their alleged sexual encounter. Cohen testified Trump told him to bury Stormy Daniels’ story weeks before the election, demanding: “just take care of it”. Cohen testified he finalized the $130,000 payments to Daniels and immediately went to Trump to inform him the deal was done. “Would you have made that payment to Stormy Daniels without getting a signoff from Mr Trump?” Hoffinger asked Cohen. “No, because everything required Mr Trump’s signoff. And on top of that, I wanted the money back,” he said.
Here’s a recap Daniels’ testimony on Tuesday of an alleged sexual liaison with Trump some 20 years ago as well as how Trump’s lawyers sought to discredit and undermine her testimony on Thursday. Cohen said Trump urged him to delay the payment to Daniels’ lawyer until after the election. Cohen said he resisted paying out of his own pocket but relented after Trump promised him: “You’ll get the money back.”
Judge Juan Merchan denied a Trump team subpoena seeking records from Mark Pomerantz, a former Manhattan prosecutor who worked on the hush-money case until resigning in frustration. Cohen said Trump was angry at the possibility Daniels might come forward after the Access Hollywood tape release in which Trump bragged about groping women “by the pussy” without their consent. “This was a disaster, a fucking disaster,” Cohen recalled Trump saying. “Women will hate me.”
The defense resumed cross-examination on Friday morning of Madeleine Westerhout, Trump’s former executive assistant and director of Oval Office operations in the White House. Cohen said Trump was not worried about any impact on his marriage to Melania. He said Trump told him: “How long do you think I’ll be on the market for? Not long”. Cohen said he concluded that “this was all about the campaign.”
Westerhout testified that Trump was “very upset” about the Wall Street Journal’s 2018 story about the hush money deal with Daniels. Donald Trump’s former fixer Michael Cohen took the stand on Monday. Cohen is core to the case against Trump, as he is accused of shuttling $130,000 to the adult film actor Stormy Daniels days before the 2016 election in exchange for her silence about an alleged sexual encounter with Trump 10 years prior.
Several custodial witnesses who testified about phone records and Trump’s social media posts followed Westerhout’s testimony on Friday. Prosecutors contend Trump’s repayment of Cohen was criminal because he listed the reimbursements as legal expenses. Cohen’s testimony is crucial in establishing whether Trump knew the repayment scheme would be logged in the Trump Organization’s books as “legal expense”, and that the false entries were in violation of election law.
The jury was once again shown text messages between Daniels’ manager Gina Rodriguez and then National Enquirer editor Dylan Howard about Daniels’ claim that she had had sex with Trump. Cohen said he first met Trump through Trump’s Donald Jr. Eventually, Cohen would work as Trump’s special counsel for 10 years, adding: “I would only answer to him.”
Court is expected resume on Monday morning, and the prosecution has said they expect to call two more witnesses. Michael Cohen, Trump’s consigliere turned key prosecution witness, is expected to take the stand on Monday. Prosecutor Susan Hoffinger worked to establish that Cohen was effectively Trump’s right-hand man. “It was whatever concerned him, whatever he wanted,” Cohen said.
Trump’s attorneys requested Merchan implement a gag order for Cohen, who has posted about Trump on social media in recent weeks. In response, Merchan told prosecutors to inform Cohen “that the judge is asking him to refrain from making any more statements” about the case or about Trump. Hoffinger also tried to convey that Trump was well aware of workings at the office undermining a potential defense argument that he was distracted when signing checks.
Cohen testified about a meeting with American Media Inc publisher David Pecker in summer 2015, shortly after Trump announced his presidential candidacy, in which prosecutors say Pecker, Cohen and Trump hatched a catch-and-kill plan to bury negative press about the then candidate.
Cohen said that in the fall of 2015, he’d heard that a former Trump Tower doorman said Trump had a “love child” and Cohen wanted Trump’s direction on what to do. “He told me to make sure that the story doesn’t get out – you handle it.” Cohen said he worked with Dylan Howard of the National Enquirer, and Pecker, and that Cohen would pass updates “immediately” to Trump.
Cohen said he was present at a 2016 conversation between Trump and Pecker, during which Pecker said: “It’s going to cost him $150,000 to control the story, to which Mr Trump replied: ‘No problem, I’ll take care of it.’”
Cohen said in 2016, he learned an agreement had been reached with Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model, for $150,000. Trump’s reaction to the agreement was: “Fantastic! Great job!” Pecker then wanted to know “when he should anticipate receiving, being paid back the $150,000”, Cohen said.
Cohen testified Trump told him to bury Stormy Daniels’ story weeks before the election, demanding: “just take care of it”. Cohen testified he finalized the $130,000 payments to Daniels and immediately went to Trump to inform him the deal was done. “Would you have made that payment to Stormy Daniels without getting a signoff from Mr Trump?” Hoffinger asked Cohen. “No, because everything required Mr Trump’s signoff. And on top of that, I wanted the money back,” he said.
Cohen said Trump urged him to delay the payment to Daniels’ lawyer until after the election. Cohen said he resisted paying out of his own pocket but relented after Trump promised him: “You’ll get the money back.”
Cohen said Trump was angry at the possibility Daniels might come forward after the Access Hollywood tape release in which Trump bragged about groping women “by the pussy” without their consent. “This was a disaster, a fucking disaster,” Cohen recalled Trump saying. “Women will hate me.”
Cohen said Trump was not worried about any impact on his marriage to Melania. He said Trump told him: “How long do you think I’ll be on the market for? Not long”. Cohen said he concluded that “this was all about the campaign.”
Key characters and factsKey characters and facts
Trump hush-money trial status: Trump pleaded not guilty; the trial began on 15 April 2024.Trump hush-money trial status: Trump pleaded not guilty; the trial began on 15 April 2024.
Charges: 34 felony charges of falsifying business records.Charges: 34 felony charges of falsifying business records.
Hush-money case summary: The case involves a hush-money scheme during the 2016 presidential election. Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen paid $130,000 to the adult film star Stormy Daniels to quash her story about having an extramarital affair with the former president. Trump has denied the affair took place. Prosecutors accuse the former president of illegally reimbursing Cohen for the hush-money payment by falsely classifying the transaction, executed by the Trump Organization, as legal expenses.Hush-money case summary: The case involves a hush-money scheme during the 2016 presidential election. Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen paid $130,000 to the adult film star Stormy Daniels to quash her story about having an extramarital affair with the former president. Trump has denied the affair took place. Prosecutors accuse the former president of illegally reimbursing Cohen for the hush-money payment by falsely classifying the transaction, executed by the Trump Organization, as legal expenses.
Verdict before election? Likely.Verdict before election? Likely.
Sign up to Trump on TrialSign up to Trump on Trial
Stay up to date on all of Donald Trump’s trials. Guardian staff will send weekly updates each Wednesday – as well as bonus editions on major trial days.Stay up to date on all of Donald Trump’s trials. Guardian staff will send weekly updates each Wednesday – as well as bonus editions on major trial days.
after newsletter promotionafter newsletter promotion
Key moments in the trial so farKey moments in the trial so far
10 May: Trump appeared frustrated in court while possible Cohen testimony looms.
9 May: Trump attorneys sought to cast doubt on the account of alleged tryst – but Stormy Daniels refused to concede any inconsistencies.9 May: Trump attorneys sought to cast doubt on the account of alleged tryst – but Stormy Daniels refused to concede any inconsistencies.
7 May: Stormy Daniels undercut some of Trump’s defenses as his lawyer suggested Daniels has a propensity to embellish.7 May: Stormy Daniels undercut some of Trump’s defenses as his lawyer suggested Daniels has a propensity to embellish.
6 May: prosecutors moved on to the alleged falsification of business records to cover up hush-money payments to Stormy Daniels, after previously calling witnesses who described a conspiracy to kill the story.6 May: prosecutors moved on to the alleged falsification of business records to cover up hush-money payments to Stormy Daniels, after previously calling witnesses who described a conspiracy to kill the story.
3 May: Hope Hicks took the stand, describing 2016 Trump campaign staffers’ panic when a recording emerged in which Trump bragged about groping women and the former president’s complete control over the campaign.3 May: Hope Hicks took the stand, describing 2016 Trump campaign staffers’ panic when a recording emerged in which Trump bragged about groping women and the former president’s complete control over the campaign.
2 May: Keith Davidson, a lawyer who negotiated payments, testified.2 May: Keith Davidson, a lawyer who negotiated payments, testified.
30 April: Trump fined $9,000 over gag order violations as judge warns of jail time.30 April: Trump fined $9,000 over gag order violations as judge warns of jail time.
26 April: Pecker’s testimony presented a granular look into a hush-money scheme that prosecutors allege was meant to sway the 2016 election in the real estate mogul’s favor.26 April: Pecker’s testimony presented a granular look into a hush-money scheme that prosecutors allege was meant to sway the 2016 election in the real estate mogul’s favor.
25 April: Pecker testified about his role in buying a story from the model Karen McDougal about an alleged affair with Trump.25 April: Pecker testified about his role in buying a story from the model Karen McDougal about an alleged affair with Trump.
23 April: David Pecker, the National Enquirer publisher, said he was Trump’s “eyes and ears” during the 2016 election campaign.23 April: David Pecker, the National Enquirer publisher, said he was Trump’s “eyes and ears” during the 2016 election campaign.
22 April: In its opening statement, the prosecution said Trump “orchestrated a criminal scheme to corrupt the 2016 presidential election” in his efforts to cover up an alleged affair with the adult film star Stormy Daniels.22 April: In its opening statement, the prosecution said Trump “orchestrated a criminal scheme to corrupt the 2016 presidential election” in his efforts to cover up an alleged affair with the adult film star Stormy Daniels.
19 April: The court finally chose all 18 jurors.19 April: The court finally chose all 18 jurors.
18 April: Twelve jurors were selected for after two seated jurors were removed earlier in the day.18 April: Twelve jurors were selected for after two seated jurors were removed earlier in the day.
15 April: Trump’s hush-money trial begins. He is the country’s first president to face a criminal trial.15 April: Trump’s hush-money trial begins. He is the country’s first president to face a criminal trial.
10 May: Trump appeared frustrated in court while possible Cohen testimony looms.
9 May: Trump attorneys sought to cast doubt on the account of alleged tryst – but Stormy Daniels refused to concede any inconsistencies.9 May: Trump attorneys sought to cast doubt on the account of alleged tryst – but Stormy Daniels refused to concede any inconsistencies.
7 May: Stormy Daniels undercut some of Trump’s defenses as his lawyer suggested Daniels has a propensity to embellish.7 May: Stormy Daniels undercut some of Trump’s defenses as his lawyer suggested Daniels has a propensity to embellish.
6 May: prosecutors moved on to the alleged falsification of business records to cover up hush-money payments to Stormy Daniels, after previously calling witnesses who described a conspiracy to kill the story.6 May: prosecutors moved on to the alleged falsification of business records to cover up hush-money payments to Stormy Daniels, after previously calling witnesses who described a conspiracy to kill the story.
3 May: Hope Hicks took the stand, describing 2016 Trump campaign staffers’ panic when a recording emerged in which Trump bragged about groping women and the former president’s complete control over the campaign.3 May: Hope Hicks took the stand, describing 2016 Trump campaign staffers’ panic when a recording emerged in which Trump bragged about groping women and the former president’s complete control over the campaign.
2 May: Keith Davidson, a lawyer who negotiated payments, testified.2 May: Keith Davidson, a lawyer who negotiated payments, testified.
30 April: Trump fined $9,000 over gag order violations as judge warns of jail time.30 April: Trump fined $9,000 over gag order violations as judge warns of jail time.
26 April: Pecker’s testimony presented a granular look into a hush-money scheme that prosecutors allege was meant to sway the 2016 election in the real estate mogul’s favor.26 April: Pecker’s testimony presented a granular look into a hush-money scheme that prosecutors allege was meant to sway the 2016 election in the real estate mogul’s favor.
25 April: Pecker testified about his role in buying a story from the model Karen McDougal about an alleged affair with Trump.25 April: Pecker testified about his role in buying a story from the model Karen McDougal about an alleged affair with Trump.
23 April: David Pecker, the National Enquirer publisher, said he was Trump’s “eyes and ears” during the 2016 election campaign.23 April: David Pecker, the National Enquirer publisher, said he was Trump’s “eyes and ears” during the 2016 election campaign.
22 April: In its opening statement, the prosecution said Trump “orchestrated a criminal scheme to corrupt the 2016 presidential election” in his efforts to cover up an alleged affair with the adult film star Stormy Daniels.22 April: In its opening statement, the prosecution said Trump “orchestrated a criminal scheme to corrupt the 2016 presidential election” in his efforts to cover up an alleged affair with the adult film star Stormy Daniels.
19 April: The court finally chose all 18 jurors.19 April: The court finally chose all 18 jurors.
18 April: Twelve jurors were selected for after two seated jurors were removed earlier in the day.18 April: Twelve jurors were selected for after two seated jurors were removed earlier in the day.
15 April: Trump’s hush-money trial begins. He is the country’s first president to face a criminal trial.15 April: Trump’s hush-money trial begins. He is the country’s first president to face a criminal trial.