WASHIGTON-Former US President Donald Trump says he is expecting to be arrested on Tuesday in a case about alleged hush money paid to an ex-porn star. Mr Trump called on his supporters to protest against such a move in a post on his Truth Social platform.
One of Mr Trump’s lawyers said his claim was based on media reports that he could be indicted next week. If Mr Trump is indicted, it would be the first criminal case ever brought against a former US president.
It would also have serious ramifications for his campaign to become the Republican nominee in the 2024 presidential election.
For five years, prosecutors in New York have been investigating allegations that hush money was paid on Mr Trump’s behalf to former porn star Stormy Daniels prior to the 2016 presidential election. Ms Daniels says she was paid $130,000 (£107,000) by Mr Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen before the 2016 election in exchange for silence about an alleged affair. Mr Trump denies they had sexual relations and has dismissed the case as being politically motivated. It is one of several cases in which the 76-year-old is currently being investigated, although he has not yet been charged in any and denies wrongdoing in each.
On Saturday Mr Trump wrote on his social networking site Truth Social that “illegal leaks” from the Manhattan district attorney’s office “indicate” he would be arrested on Tuesday. The district attorney’s office has not yet commented. Mr Trump’s lawyer, Susan Necheles, told the BBC’s US partner CBS News that his post was “based on media reports”. “Since this is a political prosecution, the district attorney’s office has engaged in a practice of leaking everything to the press, rather than communicating with President Trump’s attorneys as would be done in a normal case,” she said.
The Republican Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Kevin McCarthy, hit out at the investigation, calling it “an outrageous abuse of power by a radical DA [district attorney]”.
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