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Former President Donald Trump guilty on all counts in criminal hush money trial

Former President Donald Trump was charged with 34 counts of falsifying business records in New York.
Trump Hush Money
Posted at 5:26 AM, May 30, 2024

A jury found former President Donald Trump guilty on all 34 counts of falsifying business records in his New York criminal hush money trial, making him the first American president to be convicted of a crime.

The jury of seven men and five women reached a verdict on Thursday after less than two full days of deliberating.

A Scripps News national political correspondent who was in the courtroom said Trump was "stone-faced" as the guilty verdict was read.

Leaving the courthouse, the likely Republican nominee for president addressed the media.

“This was a disgrace. This was a rigged trial by a conflicted judge who was corrupt," Trump said.

Trump continued to insist he is an "innocent man," claiming his supporters will still come through for him on Election Day.

"The real verdict is going to be Nov. 5 by the people," he said. "We didn't do a thing wrong."

Trump said on Truth Social that he would have more to say at a press conference on Friday at 11 a.m.

Former President Donald Trump walks to make comments to members of the media after a jury convicted him of felony crimes for falsifying business records in a scheme to illegally influence the 2016 election.

Trump on Trial

What's next for Trump after guilty verdict?

Scripps News Staff
5:21 PM, May 30, 2024

Jurors began deliberating at around noon Wednesday after receiving detailed instructions from Judge Juan Merchan. During jury instructions, Merchan informed jurors that they could not penalize Trump for not testifying as the burden of proof rests with the prosecution.

During the six-week trial, prosecutors argued Trump falsified the records to conceal damaging stories, including an alleged affair with porn star Stormy Daniels, ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

Michael Cohen, Trump’s former attorney and “fixer,” testified that the former president directed him to make a $130,000 payment to Daniels to keep her quiet about an alleged affair. Prosecutors say Trump's reimbursement to Cohen was disguised as a legal expense, violating state election law.

The defense set out to discredit Cohen, noting that he is a convicted felon with a reputation for lying. Trump’s team had described the nature of the payments to Cohen as "a legal expense."

However, that argument did not appear to resonate with the jurors.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, who brought the case against Trump, praised his team and the jurors for their service.

Former President Donald Trump returns from a break in his criminal trial

Trump on Trial

Reactions after former President Donald Trump found guilty on all 34 counts

Alex Arger
3:30 PM, May 30, 2024

"We should all be thankful for the careful attention that this jury paid to the evidence and the law and their time and commitment over these past several weeks," he said.

Trump is expected to appeal the verdict, setting off another legal process as the former president seeks reelection.

The judge has scheduled sentencing for July 11, just days before the Republican National Convention. Trump faces up to four years in prison. However, as he has no criminal history, it's likely he will get a lighter sentence.

Bragg declined to say what sentence he will be seeking.

The New York trial was the first of four for Trump. He faces federal charges in Florida for his handling of classified documents. He was also indicted in Washington, D.C., for allegedly engaging in a conspiracy to subvert the 2020 presidential election. In Georgia, Trump also faces charges for allegedly interfering with the election.

He has pleaded not guilty in all of those cases.