Donald Trump Arrested, Pleads Not Guilty To 34 Felony Counts Of Falsifying Business Records
Donald Trump has been arrested!
Donald Trump turned himself over to authorities in Manhattan on Tuesday (Apr. 4) after a grand jury voted to indict him last Thursday (Mar. 30). The indictment includes 34 criminal counts of falsifying business records and conspiracy in connection with hush money payments to two women –who claimed to have had affairs with Trump– before the 2016 presidential election.
One of the women who was allegedly paid off is porn star Stormy Daniels. The adult film actress reportedly received $130,000 from Trump’s then-lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen at Trump’s direction.
The other is Playboy model Karen McDougal, who allegedly received $150,000 from the publisher of The National Enquirer.
The charging document was unsealed at his arraignment in Manhattan Supreme Court, where a prosecutor said Trump’s crimes had undermined the 2016 election. The former President pleaded “Not Guilty” to the charges. Donald Trump has denied any wrongdoing, calling the investigation a “witch-hunt” and accusing the DA of being a “racist.”
The arrest marks a historical moment as it’s the first time a former U.S. president has faced criminal charges and the prospect of jail time.
Upon arriving at the Manhattan courthouse, Donald Trump was arrested, fingerprinted, and processed ahead of his scheduled arraignment before Judge Juan Merchan. While en route to the courthouse, Trump took to the social media platform Truth Social and said,
“Heading to Lower Manhattan, the Courthouse. Seems so SURREAL — WOW, they are going to ARREST ME. Can’t believe this is happening in America. MAGA!”
With the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riot still fresh in officials’ minds, security was high in the courthouse and nearby areas as the police department, court officers, and Secret Service prepared for protests.
News outlets from around the world set up cameras outside of the courthouse with hopes of getting a glimpse of the former President. The judge had barred TV cameras from inside the courtroom but decided to allow some photographers inside, according to reports.
Trump has also used the indictment as an opportunity to raise money for his 2024 presidential campaign, which recently announced that it had raised $7 million since a grand jury voted to indict Trump last week.
Hundreds of pro- and anti-Trump demonstrators gathered across from the courthouse ahead of his scheduled appearance. According to the NYPD, there were about 300 pro-Trump demonstrators near the courthouse and 150 anti-Trump protesters.
Separately, Donald Trump is under criminal investigation by the Department of Justice and a state prosecutor in Georgia for efforts to reverse his 2020 election loss to President Joe Biden.
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