„Not America as it should be!“ – Trump announces court appearance

VonC. Peters

3. April 2023

Washington/New York (dpa/NIF) – After the unprecedented indictment of former US President Donald Trump, the 76-year-old plans to appear in court in New York on Tuesday. He made the announcement via the online network Truth Social, which he co-founded. He will leave his private residence Mar-a-Lago in the US state of Florida at 12 noon (local time) on Monday. „On Tuesday morning, believe it or not, I will go to the courthouse. This is not America as it should be!“ he wrote.

The arraignment in Manhattan, for which Trump must appear, is scheduled for Tuesday, according to consistent media reports. The background: Shortly before his election as president in 2016, Trump paid hush money to p*rn actress Stormy Daniels. She had claimed that she had s*x with him. Trump denies an affair, but not that any money was paid. The payment could conflict with campaign finance rules.

On the fact that Trump is now facing criminal charges in connection with the payment, Daniels told the British newspaper The Times a few days ago: „He’s done so much worse that he should have been punished for before.“

Allegations denied again

Trump’s lawyer Joe Tacopina once again denied the allegations over the weekend. „This was a personal issue, not a campaign issue,“ Tacopina told CNN television on Sunday. He also said there was no evidence of any alleged falsification of business records. The indictment is still under seal – the exact charges and details are still unclear and will only become public with the arraignment.

For the court hearing in New York, Trump is likely to be briefly detained so that fingerprints and police photographs can be taken of him. Often defendants are then handcuffed in these situations – but whether this will happen in Trump’s case is highly questionable.

New York is preparing for a large crowd and demonstrations. The first protests, such as those by the radical Republican and Trump supporter Marjorie Taylor, have already been announced. Trump himself had also called on his supporters to protest before the announcement of the indictment.

The ex-US president is using the indictment to once again present himself as the victim of a politically controlled justice system and to mobilise his supporters, on whose votes he will depend in his bid for the 2024 presidential election. From a purely legal point of view, Trump could theoretically run in the 2024 election even as a convicted felon, as legal experts point out.

However, the further legal procedure could drag on for a long time. Before a trial, there is first a series of hearings and the possibility to file all kinds of motions.

Trump is the first ex-president in the history of the United States to face criminal charges. The district attorney’s office in Manhattan had announced an indictment against the Republican on Thursday evening.

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