The former president of the United States Donald Trump announced today on his social network Truth Social that he expects to be “arrested” next Tuesday and called for protests, before a possible accusation for a bribe paid to a porn actress before the 2016 elections.
Citing “leaks” from the Manhattan district attorney’s office, Trump, who is aiming to run for the White House again in 2024, wrote in all capital letters: “The leading Republican candidate and former president of the United States will be arrested on Tuesday next week. Protest, Take Back Our Nation!”
The investigation centers on a $130,000 payment made before the 2016 election to keep Stormy Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, from revealing her alleged relationship with Trump, which the former president denies.
The Manhattan Prosecutor’s Office had offered the magnate the possibility of testifying in this case of alleged bribery and in which his lawyer, Michael Cohen, was an instrumental part by giving Clifford the payment to keep quiet that he had alleged relations with Trump almost 20 years ago.
In addition, it is being investigated whether this management was carried out irregularly by being hidden in the accounts of the Trump Organization, Trump’s company, during the 2016 electoral campaign that led him to the White House.
Prosecutors are evaluating filing charges against the former president in this case.
If the Manhattan district attorney were to indict Trump, the 76-year-old tycoon would become the first former US president to be charged with a crime.
Trump’s attorney told CNBC yesterday that his client would turn himself in to face criminal charges if indicted by a Manhattan grand jury.
In his post today on Truth Social, the social network he created after being banned from other platforms, Trump referred to “illegal leaks from a corrupt and highly politicized Manhattan district attorney’s office.”
Hours later, in a new publication, he described his successor, Democrat Joe Biden, as “corrupt” and urged his followers to demonstrate: “Protest, protest, protest!!!”, he claimed.
Susan Necheles, a lawyer for Trump, said the former president’s posts were based on media reports and not on any new action taken by prosecutors.
“Since this is a political indictment, the district attorney’s office is resorting to leaks to the press, rather than reaching out to President Trump’s lawyers as it would in a normal case,” Necheles said in a statement sent to the AFP agency.
For his part, the speaker of the House of Representatives, Republican Kevin McCarthy, accused New York prosecutors of seeking “political revenge” against Trump and said he would launch an investigation in Congress.
A grand jury in New York, which analyzes evidence presented by prosecutors to decide whether charges are warranted, has been hearing witnesses in Trump’s case.
Jurors heard Monday from Cohen, who was sentenced in 2018 to three years in prison on federal charges related to the outlay, but pleaded guilty, saying he had only carried out the former president’s orders.
Daniels herself met with prosecutors on Wednesday and “agreed to be available as a witness or for further investigation if necessary,” according to her attorney Charles Brewster.
Trump faces several criminal investigations at the state and federal level for possible irregularities before, during and after his term (2017-2021).
In Georgia, a prosecutor is investigating attempts by Trump and his allies to overturn Biden’s 2020 election defeat in that southern state.
He is also the subject of a federal investigation into his handling of classified documents, as well as his possible involvement in the violent invasion of the Capitol on January 6, 2021.