Thursday, May 30, 2024

Donald Trump convicted: Guilty on all 34 counts

taz Donald Trump convicted: Guilty on all 34 counts Juries unanimously find Donald Trump guilty on all counts. The sentence in the hush money trial will be announced on July 11. NEW YORK dpa/rtr/ap/taz | In the trial for concealing hush money payments to a porn actress, the jury found former US President Donald Trump guilty on all 34 counts. The jury announced this on Thursday in New York. It is the first time in American history that an ex-president has been convicted of a crime. Trump, who had seemed calm in the courtroom that afternoon, initially accepted the verdict with a stony face. A little later, however, he ranted in his usual manner and described his conviction as a "disgrace" and the trial itself as political. The judge was corrupt and the "real verdict" would be made in the US presidential election in November, said Trump as he left the courthouse on Thursday in New York. Judge Juan Merchan previously set the sentence for July 11. The 77-year-old Trump could then face a fine or up to four years in prison. The latter would be unusual, however. A prison sentence could also be suspended. The Republican can appeal - and even if convicted, he can run in the presidential election in November. Hush money covered up The prosecution had accused Trump of wanting to improve his chances of winning the 2016 presidential election by paying $130,000 in hush money to porn actress Stormy Daniels and then illegally accounting for the flow of money. The seven men and five women on the jury had heard the statements of more than 20 witnesses since mid-April. The key witness was Michael Cohen, the former president's ex-confidant. The jury's deliberations had been underway since Wednesday. Although the payment itself - which neither side disputes - was not illegal, the now 77-year-old is said to have manipulated documents when reimbursing the amount to his then personal lawyer Michael Cohen in order to conceal the real reason for the transaction. This made him guilty of illegal campaign financing in 34 cases. Trump's lawyers had argued that these were only ordinary lawyers' fees. Judgment with an impact on the election campaign The judgment is also likely to have an impact on the current election campaign in the United States - but the question is: how much and to whose advantage? Trump is trying to turn the case into a personal advantage and mobilize his supporters by portraying himself as the victim of a politically motivated justice system. However, many voters are likely to see the first criminal conviction of a former US president as a disgrace. Incumbent Joe Biden, on the other hand, who is seeking re-election in November, does not seem to have benefited noticeably from the legal proceedings against his challenger. The latest polls suggest that the verdict will have little impact on many Americans' voting decisions on November 5. However, the sentence could have an impact - especially in the unlikely event of a prison sentence. The trial took place in downtown Manhattan amid unprecedented media interest and the strictest security measures. US media covered the event like a major sporting event and quoted from the courtroom, where no TV recordings were allowed, every minute. They also commented on every movement of Trump, who was always present at the hearings and only changed the color of his tie from day to day.