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/article/2024/may/29/trump-hush-money-trial-merchan-jury-deliberation

The article has changed 3 times. There is an RSS feed of changes available.

Version 1 Version 2
Trump hush-money judge guides jury as trial wraps and deliberations begin Trump hush-money trial jury begins deliberations after judge gives guidance
(about 1 hour later)
Judge Juan Merchan tells jury ‘you are the judgers of facts’ as he gives instructions ahead of deliberationsJudge Juan Merchan tells jury ‘you are the judgers of facts’ as he gives instructions ahead of deliberations
Donald Trump’s criminal hush money trial in New York inched towards its conclusion Wednesday with jury deliberations expected to start in a matter of hours. Donald Trump’s criminal hush-money trial in New York inched towards its conclusion on Wednesday with jury deliberations starting just before 11.30am local time.
Judge Juan Merchan began instructing jurors after 10am local time; when he concludes, the jury will start deliberating. Merchan’s directives on the law, which he said would last about one hour, are intended on guiding jurors about how they are supposed to weigh the case. Before the start of deliberations, Judge Juan Merchan instructed jurors . Merchan’s directives on the law were intended to guide jurors about how they are supposed to weigh the case.
Early on into his instructions, Merchan said that jurors shouldn’t look to his comments during the trial as suggesting that Trump was innocent or guilty. Early on in his instructions, Merchan said that jurors should not look to his comments during the trial as suggesting that Trump was innocent or guilty.
“It is not my responsibility to judge the evidence here,” Merchan said. “You are the judgers of the facts.”“It is not my responsibility to judge the evidence here,” Merchan said. “You are the judgers of the facts.”
He also told jurors that they should not consider Trump possibly winding up in jail when rendering their verdict.He also told jurors that they should not consider Trump possibly winding up in jail when rendering their verdict.
“You may not speculate with matters related to sentencing or punishment,” Merchan said. The judge remarked that it’s “my responsibility” to determine a possible sentence – not jurors’. “You may not speculate with matters related to sentencing or punishment,” Merchan said. The judge remarked that it was “my responsibility” to determine a possible sentence – not jurors’.
The former president is charged with falsifying business records in relation to paying off adult film actor Stormy Daniels before the 2016 election. Trump is the first US president, former or present, to face a criminal trial. The former president is charged with falsifying business records in relation to paying off the adult film actor Stormy Daniels before the 2016 election. Trump is the first US president, former or present, to face a criminal trial.
Manhattan prosecutors allege that Trump’s then attorney, Michael Cohen, shuttled $130,000 to Daniels days before the election, so that her claim of an extramarital sexual liaison wouldn’t go public and tank his chances at the polls. Manhattan prosecutors allege that Trump’s then attorney, Michael Cohen, shuttled $130,000 to Daniels days before the election, so that her claim of an extramarital sexual liaison would not go public and tank his chances at the polls.
This next step of Trump’s trial marks a pivotal moment. If jurors reach a verdict, they will determine whether he is guilty or not guilty.This next step of Trump’s trial marks a pivotal moment. If jurors reach a verdict, they will determine whether he is guilty or not guilty.
If Trump is found guilty, the presumptive GOP presidential candidate faces the prospect of jail – albeit unlikely – when he’s sentenced. Trump has denied the charge against him. If Trump is found guilty, the presumptive Republican presidential candidate faces the possibility of jail – albeit unlikely – when he is sentenced. Trump denies the charges against him.
Trump also faces three other criminal cases: one for trying to influence the 2020 election in Georgia, another for his conduct around the January 6 Capitol attack, and a third one involving his treatment of sensitive documents after he left the White House. These other three cases have been pushed back and it’s unlikely that any would conclude before the November election. Trump also faces three other criminal cases: one for trying to influence the 2020 election in Georgia, another for his conduct around the January 6 Capitol attack, and a third one involving his treatment of sensitive documents after he left the White House. These other three cases have been pushed back and it is unlikely that any would conclude before the November election.
Trump’s legal woes do not appear to have affected him in the polls. He still boasts a narrow edge over Joe Biden in some polls and is proving strong in some key states that are key to winning the race. Trump’s legal woes do not appear to have affected him in the polls. He still boasts a narrow edge over Joe Biden in some polls and is proving strong in some states that are key to winning the race.
On Tuesday, the defense and prosecution presented their summations. Prosecutor Joshua Steinglass insisted that the case was about far more than paying off Daniels.On Tuesday, the defense and prosecution presented their summations. Prosecutor Joshua Steinglass insisted that the case was about far more than paying off Daniels.
Rather, Steinglass said, Trump’s plot with Cohen and tabloid honcho David Pecker in summer 2015 – where the scandal sheet publisher said he’d keep an eye out for damaging information about the then-candidate – deprived Americans of true choice at the ballot box. Rather, Steinglass said, Trump’s plot with Cohen and tabloid honcho David Pecker in summer 2015 – where the scandal sheet publisher said he would keep an eye out for damaging information about the then candidate – deprived Americans of true choice at the ballot box.
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
“Three rich and powerful men, high up in Trump Tower, tried to become even more powerful by controlling the information that reached voters,” Steinglass said.“Three rich and powerful men, high up in Trump Tower, tried to become even more powerful by controlling the information that reached voters,” Steinglass said.
“The value of this corrupt bargain. It turned out to be one of the most valuable contributions to the Trump campaign. This scheme cooked up by these men, at this time, could very well be what got Donald Trump elected.” “The value of this corrupt bargain. It turned out to be one of the most valuable contributions to the Trump campaign. This scheme cooked up by these men, at this time, could very well be what got Donald Trump elected.
“In simplest terms, Stormy Daniels is the motive,” Steinglass said at one point.“In simplest terms, Stormy Daniels is the motive,” Steinglass said at one point.
Trump’s defense lawyer, Todd Blanche, insisted that Cohen was a liar and that even if there were a conspiracy, it’s not a big deal. Trump’s defense lawyer Todd Blanche insisted that Cohen was a liar and that even if there were a conspiracy, it was not a big deal.
“It doesn’t matter if there was a conspiracy to try and win an election,” Blanche said of the alleged scheme involving Trump, who is accused elsewhere of election meddling and fostering civil unrest to stop Biden from taking office. “Every campaign in this country is a conspiracy to promote a candidate.” “It doesn’t matter if there was a conspiracy to try and win an election,” Blanche said of the alleged scheme involving Trump. “Every campaign in this country is a conspiracy to promote a candidate.”
Blanche phrased this as a hypothetical – he didn’t admit there was a conspiracy and in fact, denied one. But, even if there were, Blanche insisted it was business as usual. Blanche phrased this as a hypothetical – he did not admit there was a conspiracy and in fact, denied one. But, even if there were, Blanche insisted it was business as usual.
“Many politicians work with the media to try and promote their image,” Blanche said, telling jurors at one point that in order for it to be a legal problem, “you have to find that this effort was done by unlawful means”.“Many politicians work with the media to try and promote their image,” Blanche said, telling jurors at one point that in order for it to be a legal problem, “you have to find that this effort was done by unlawful means”.