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Donald Trump’s Legal Troubles – A Setback Amid 2024 Presidential Campaign

Donald Trump Faces Legal Troubles Amid 2024 Presidential Campaign

Despite a recent conviction, former President Donald Trump remains a viable candidate for the upcoming presidential election. On Thursday, a New York jury found Trump guilty of falsifying business records in connection with a hush money payment to a porn star. This conviction does not preclude him from running for office. Should he win the presidency, Trump could potentially halt federal prosecutions or pardon himself for any federal crimes.

Overview of Legal Cases

Donald Trump has been indicted in three additional cases—two in federal courts and one in state court—and has pleaded not guilty to all charges. It is unlikely that he will face trial in these cases before the November 5, 2024, election against Democratic President Joe Biden.

Hush Money Case

Donald Trump was convicted on 34 felony counts for falsifying business records related to a $130,000 payment to porn star Stormy Daniels. The payment was made by Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, to secure Daniels’ silence about an alleged 2006 sexual encounter. Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg accused Trump of concealing a violation of election laws by misclassifying the reimbursement as legal fees. Trump pleaded not guilty on April 4, 2023, denying the encounter but acknowledging the payment.

He argued the payment was to avoid personal embarrassment, not to influence his campaign.

Election Subversion Charges

Special Counsel Jack Smith has charged Trump with attempting to overturn his 2020 election loss to Biden. Scheduled to go to trial on March 4, this federal case involves Trump’s alleged incitement of the January 6 Capitol attack and efforts to submit fraudulent electors to disrupt Biden’s certification. Trump pleaded not guilty to the four-count indictment on August 3, 2023. The U.S. Court of Appeals rejected Trump’s claim of immunity from prosecution for actions taken while in office.

New York Attorney General Civil Lawsuit

In a civil fraud case, Donald Trump was ordered to pay $354.9 million in penalties, later growing to $454.2 million with interest, for overstating his net worth to secure better terms from lenders and insurers. The New York Attorney General’s lawsuit accused Trump and his company of fraudulent practices from 2011 to 2021. Trump has posted a $175 million bond while appealing the judgment.

Georgia Election Interference Charges

Trump pleaded not guilty to 13 felony counts in Georgia related to efforts to overturn his 2020 election loss. The charges, brought by District Attorney Fani Willis, include pressuring state officials and setting up a fake slate of electors. The case, delayed by legal disputes, includes other high-profile defendants like Rudy Giuliani and Mark Meadows.

Classified Documents Case

Trump faces 40 counts in a federal case for unlawfully retaining classified documents and obstructing efforts to recover them. The charges, which include violations of the Espionage Act, could result in significant prison time. Trump has argued that he considered the documents personal property. The trial, initially set for May 20, is currently on hold.

Sexual Abuse and Defamation Lawsuits

Trump has been ordered to pay significant damages in defamation lawsuits brought by writer E. Jean Carroll. A jury found Trump liable for defamation and sexual abuse, awarding Carroll $5 million. In a separate case, Trump was ordered to pay $83.3 million for defaming Carroll in 2019. Trump is appealing both decisions. He denies the allegations, claiming Carroll fabricated the story for financial gain.

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