Former President Donald Trump was indicted on 34 charges by a Manhattan Grand Jury Thursday night for alleged “hush money” payments given to a former adult actress.
While the indictment remains under seal and specific charges against the former president are still unknown, it comes in a case related to $130,000 in hush money allegedly paid to adult film star Stormy Daniels in exchange for her silence over a 2006 affair. The money was paid out ahead of the 2016 election by Trump’s former attorney and fixer Michael Cohen. Cohen was later reimbursed by the Trump Organization through a series of payments that were allegedly falsely defined as “retainer fees.”
In 2018, Cohen pleaded guilty to several federal crimes for his role including tax evasion, making false statements to a federally insured bank, and campaign finance violations. He was sentenced to 3 years in prison.
For his part, the former president has repeatedly referred to the case as a politically motivated “witch hunt” and denies all wrongdoing.
Former president Trump released a statement shortly after the announcement:
“This is Political Persecution and Election interference at the highest level in history. From the time I came down the goldern escalator at Trump Tower, and even before I was sworn in as you President of the United States, the Radical Left Democrats – the enemy of hard-workin men and women of this Country – have been engaged n a Witch – Hunt to destroy the Make America Great Again movement. You remember it just like I do: Russia, Russia, Russia; the Mueller Hoax; Ukraine, Ukraine, Ukraine; Impeachment Hoax 1; Impeachment Hoax 2; the illegal and unconstitutional Mar-a-Lago raid; and now this.
“The Democrats have lied, cheated and stolen in their obsession with trying to “get Trump,” but now they’ve done the unthinkable – indicting a completely innocent person in an act of blatant Election Interference.
“Never before in our Nation’s history has this been done. The Democrats have cheated countless times over the decades, including spying on my campaign, but weaponizing our justice system to punish a political opponent, who just so happens to be a President of the United States and by far the leading Republican Candidate for President, has never happened before. Ever.
“Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg, who was hand-picked and funded by George Soros, is a disgrace. rather than stopping the unprecedented crime wave taking over New York City, he’s doing Joe Biden’s dirty work, ignoring the murders and burglaries and assaults he should be focused on. This is how Bragg spends his time!
“I believe this Witch-Hunt will backfire massively on Joe Biden. The American people realize exactly what the Radical Left Democrats are doing here. Everyone can see it. So our Movement, and our Party – united and strong – will first defeat Alvin Bragg, and then we will defeat Joe Biden and we are going to throw every last one of these Crooked Democrats out of office so we can MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”