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Donald Trump’s stormy drama: Decoding the mystery behind ex-President’s alleged ‘hush’ payments to porn star

Donald Trump’s indictment: Manhattan District Attorney has presented proof to a New York grand jury claiming that Daniels recieved a payment of $130,000 from Trump’s then-lawyer.

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There are chances that Trump could be charged for allegedly covering up the hush money payments to porn star Stormy Daniels a.k.a Stephanie Clifford. (Image: Reuters)

Social media is going berserk with #DonaldTrumparrest trending constantly for the past few days. It is anticipated that the former US President could be arrested anytime ahead of the historic indictment over hush money paid to porn actress Stormy Daniels during his 2016 presidential campaign.

If arrested, the whole case is going to be extremely significant as the world will be a first-time spectator to criminal charges being brought against an ex-president of the United States of America. Trump’s indictment could be held in a similar way like any other defendant, but it could also differ largely considering the support he is getting from the public, especially those who have resorted to violence in the past in his support.

What are the allegations against Trump?

There are chances that Trump could be charged for allegedly covering up the hush money payments to porn star Stormy Daniels a.k.a Stephanie Clifford, during his 2016 presidential campaign. Trump is expected to be indicted by a grand jury on this week.

Manhattan District Attorney has presented proof to a New York grand jury claiming that Daniels recieved a payment of $130,000 from Trump’s then-lawyer, who was later reimbursed the same amount by the former US president. It said that the money was deposited in Daniels account in order to keep her silent over her affair with Trump in 2006. However as per a BBC report, the ‘hush’ payment of reimbursement to the lawyer was falsely recorded as “legal fees” that apparently did not exist.

Will Trump be indicted?

Now, Trump could be charged with falsifying business records under Article 175 of the New York Penal Law, according to an Indian Express report. The report claims that this kind of fraud involves a 4-year sentence. However, to prove the fraud, prosecutors will need evidence which prove that Trump caused his team to make false entries in the company record, “with intent to defraud.”

Trump on the other hand has repeatedly denied any sort of reltationship with Daniels, which allegedly had started after his marriage to Melania Trump and a few months after the birth of their son Barron.

What does Stormy Daniels have to say about Trump?

Daniels has claimed that Trump had a sexual encounter with her in 2006, after he promised to put her on his reality show ‘The Apprentice’. According to a report in The New York Times, Daniels claimed that the former president used to call her but eventually she stopped responding to his calls. A Times report stated that when Trump seriously started campaigning for 2016 elections, his team got concerned about Daniels leaking the story to the press. The report claimed that this is why the payment was arranged.

Can Trump avoid indictment?

It is difficult to say at this point but the chances seem dim. As of now, Trump’s lawyers are doing their best to avoid criminal charges. If Trump is indicted, prosecutors might work with his legal team to arrange for his surrender. He would later be required to turn himself in at the district attorney’s office in New York, and then, as per the report, his arraignment will follow.

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First published on: 23-03-2023 at 08:27 IST