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Donald Trump is the first US president to be convicted of a crime

Donald Trump is the first US president to be convicted of a crime

Former US President Donald Trump has been convicted of falsifying business documents related to a hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 election. A New York jury found Trump guilty on all 34 felony counts after two days of deliberation, making him the first US president to be convicted of a crime.

Justice Juan Merchan has scheduled Trump’s sentencing for July 11, just days before the Republican Party is set to nominate its presidential candidate for the November 5 election. The conviction carries a maximum sentence of four years in prison, although shorter sentences, fines, or probation are more common for such offenses. Trump will not be jailed ahead of sentencing and plans to appeal the verdict.

Following the verdict, Trump reiterated his innocence, claiming the trial was rigged against him and stating that the real verdict would come from the voters in November. The case, considered the least significant of the four criminal prosecutions Trump faces, involved explicit testimony from Stormy Daniels about an alleged sexual encounter with Trump in 2006, which Trump denies. His former lawyer, Michael Cohen, testified that Trump approved a $130,000 hush money payment to Daniels, disguised as legal work.

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Trump’s legal team challenged Cohen’s credibility, highlighting his criminal record. However, the jury found sufficient evidence to support Cohen’s testimony. Legal experts believe Trump’s appeal faces long odds, particularly focusing on Daniels’ testimony and the prosecution’s novel legal theory.

The Biden campaign emphasized that the verdict demonstrates that no one is above the law. Republicans, including House Speaker Mike Johnson, condemned the verdict. Trump’s legal troubles are part of a broader political and legal battle, with other ongoing cases potentially influencing his presidential campaign.

If Trump were to win the presidency, he could potentially shut down the two federal cases against him, though he would not have the power to stop the state-level election-subversion case in Georgia. Trump’s legal strategy and the political implications of these cases will likely continue to play a significant role in the upcoming election.