The New York Times reports that former President Donald Trump may be on the verge of being indicted by the Manhattan district attorney's office.
The indictment, if it were to happen, would be related to the hush money scandal involving adult film star Stormy Daniels - specifically about the $130,000 that Michael Cohen, Trump's attorney, sent to Daniels in 2016 to stop her from disclosing her alleged 2006 affair with Trump. Trump, through installment payments, reimbursed Cohen.
There are a number of ways that prosecutors may try to argue that Trump broke the law here. They may, for example, try to argue that the $130,000 was an improper campaign donation as preventing Daniels from disclosing the affair was helpful to Trump's 2016 presidential campaign. Or, the prosecution could try to argue that Trump's company falsified business records by improperly filing the payments as legal expenses.
It's unclear how strong these lines of attack are. The Times writes that the case against Trump depends on an "untested and therefore risky legal theory involving a complex interplay of laws."
It ought to be emphasized that no one knows for sure whether or not Trump is actually going to be indicted. Experts are merely predicting a Trump indictment because of a recent move by the Manhattan district attorney's office.
What the office did was offer Trump the opportunity to testify in front of the grand jury.
Apparently, this is not unusual in the state of New York. But, it would be unusual for a defendant to actually testify before the grand jury.
In other words, defendants are often given the opportunity to testify before a grand jury, but they rarely accept this opportunity.
It appears that Trump is going to follow suit by not testifying.
Trump offered a lengthy statement in response to this news on his social media site, Truth Social.
Referring to the situation as a continuation of the "political Witch-Hunt," Trump begins, "I did absolutely nothing wrong. I never had an affair with Stormy Daniels, nor would I have wanted to have an affair with Stormy Daniels."
Trump, in a subsequent message, targeted Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg and Cohen.
Racist, George Soros backed D.A., Alvin Bragg, is relying on the testimony of a convicted felon, disbarred lawyer, with zero credibility, who was turned down numerous times by me when he asked for pardons on crimes he committed having nothing to do with “Trump.” But the D.A. doesn’t care about that, and he doesn’t care about the violent and vicious crimes being committed in Manhattan, which are now at a RECORD LEVEL. He only cares about “getting Trump.”
If Trump is indicted, he has insisted that he will remain in the running for 2024.