After being officially indicted by a grand jury, former president Donald Trump has responded to charges he was allegedly involved in a hush-money scheme during his 2016 presidential campaign after being hit with a 34-count indictment in the Stormy Daniels case.
Trump called the indictment “political persecution” and accused Democrats of being “crooked.”
Trump Maintains Innocence After 34-Count Indictment Handed Down For 2016 Hush-Money Scheme
“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,” CNN reports.
According to his attorney, the 76-year-old was reportedly “shocked” by the 34-count indictment, making him the first former U.S. president to face criminal charges.
Trump will be arraigned in Manhattan at 2:15 p.m. on Tuesday for an array of business fraud charges related to 2016 hush money payments to the former porn star.
He has maintained his innocence of any wrongdoing and claims he is the victim of a politically-motivated witch hunt led by Democratic Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg and current President Joe Biden.
“I believe this Witch-Hunt will backfire massively on Joe Biden,” the former president said. “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!”
Trump Will Not Be Handcuffed At Arraignment Next Week, His Lawyer Says
Trump was spotted last night at Mar-a-Lago with his wife Melania, 52, by his side.
On Friday morning, attorney Joe Tacopina said that Trump will not be put in handcuffs when he arrives in New York, and added that the Secret Service will not allow the arraignment to become a “circus.”
Tacopina told Fox News host Sean Hannity that he talked to Trump after the indictment was issued, and went on to claim they both learned about it through the media and not from Bragg’s office.
“He’s ready to fight. You know, he’s the toughest guy I know. He was shocked, you know, because we really weren’t – I was shocked,” Tacopina said of Trump’s reaction to the indictment.
BREAKING NEWS: Former President Donald Trump indicted on 34 counts of business fraud. pic.twitter.com/eRUcYmsQZY
— Ryan Shead (@RyanShead) March 31, 2023
He continued: “I’ve never been more angry about a charge because today, the rule of law in the United States of America died. It’s dead. It’s dead.”
RELATED: NY Attorney General Letitia James Files $250 Million Lawsuit Against Donald Trump, Ivanka, Donald Jr., Eric And Trump Organization Due To Allegations Of Fraud
34 Counts Likely Stem From Number Of Checks Paid To Stormy Daniels By Way Of Trump’s Former Lawyer
As for the 34-count indictment, Tacopina said that the court likely came up with that number based on the number of checks that were paid to Daniels by way of Cohen, a former lawyer who served as an attorney for Trump from 2006 to 2018, according to the outlet.
“They’ll take each check and make that a count, perhaps, and that’s how they’ll do it because the checks are paid to Cohen,” he explained.
Tacopina added that Trump’s arraignment scheduled for Tuesday is “not finalized” either,
In the first criminal case against a former president, Donald Trump has been indicted on charges involving payments made during his 2016 campaign to quash claims of two extramarital affairs. Follow @AP's live coverage. https://t.co/afO1ECsY12 pic.twitter.com/EWwIQYcJSf
— The Associated Press (@AP) March 30, 2023
“We are discussing with them, you know, obviously, there’s a group called the Secret Service that’s involved now. I mean, this is going to be something we’ve never seen the likes of,” Tacopina said.
He went on to say that “we’re gonna win this case… and humiliate them.”
“This will backfire. Because we’re gonna win this case. We will humiliate them, and they will pay the price,” Tacopina added.
This is a developing story. Be sure to check back in with The Shade Room for more updates as they come.