New Court Filing Shows Alvin Bragg’s Plan to Attack Trump’s Credibility in Hush Money Case

In a court filing Wednesday, New York prosecutors said they want to use former President Donald Trump's past legal run-ins to discredit him to the jury. But they will have to wait to see if he opts to testify at his criminal trial.

Prosecutors in the New York criminal hush money case against former President Donald Trump have said they plan to question him over his previous civil trials as part of efforts to undermine his credibility.

In a notice filed with the Supreme Court of New York on April 17, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said he and his legal team plan to cross-examine President Trump regarding his various past and present civil lawsuits, should he choose to testify in the case.

The filing with the court was signed in March but not made public until now.

Prosecutors will “disclose a list of all misconduct and criminal acts of the defendant not charged in the indictment which the People intend to use at trial to impeach the credibility of the defendant,” the court filing stated.

“If the defendant chooses to testify, the People intend to inquire regarding the following acts,” the filing added.

The notice then listed the multiple legal challenges faced by President Trump and his business empire, including the civil fraud trial against the Trump Organization brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James, and the jury’s verdicts in the two lawsuits for “sexual battery” and defamation brought against President Trump by writer E. Jean Carroll, according to the filing.

Past and Present Trump Cases to Be Examined

One jury found President Trump liable for “sexual battery” and awarded Ms. Carroll $5 million in damages, including $2 million in damages for sexual abuse and around $3 million for defamation in one of those lawsuits.

Another jury ordered he pay out $83.3 million for defaming her.

Elsewhere, Mr. Bragg plans to use various gag order violations by President Trump, including one in which he “testified untruthfully under oath when he claims that his public comments about a judge’s law clerk were instead about a witness,” according to the court filing.

He also cited a lawsuit filed by President Trump against former Secretary of State and ex-presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. That legal challenge resulted in President Trump being sanctioned and fined more than $900,000 for filing a “frivolous, bad-faith lawsuit.”

Mr. Bragg, a Democrat, is prosecuting President Trump on 34 counts of falsifying business records relating to alleged hush money payments made to adult entertainment actress Stephanie Clifford, better known as Stormy Daniels.

Prosecutors allege the payments were made in order to cover up his affair with Ms. Clifford during his 2016 campaign.

Trump May Testify

Specifically, they claim his former personal attorney Michael Cohen made the $130,000 payment—at President Trump’s direction—to buy Ms. Clifford’s silence over the alleged affair, and that campaign funds were used to make the payment, in violation of campaign finance law.

That money came from $420,000 that the Trump Organization allegedly paid Mr. Cohen through a series of monthly checks allegedly disguised as part of a retainer agreement, according to prosecutors.

President Trump has denied all wrongdoing in the case and has denied that he had an affair with Ms. Clifford.

However, he suggested during an April 12 press conference that he may testify in the case, marking a departure from his previous civil cases.

New York Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan is presiding over the “hush money” case and has imposed a gag order on President Trump, banning him from speaking publically to family members of the court, family members of Mr. Bragg and jurors, potential jurors, witnesses, court staff, counsel, and their families, regarding the case.

Lawyers for President Trump have pushed for the recusal of Justice Merchan, citing a conflict of interest, over his daughter’s business, which they allege has profited heavily off the prosecution of their client.

Jury selection in the case remains underway but is set to conclude in the coming days, although it is still unclear when exactly the trial will start.

Melanie Sun contributed to this report.

From The Epoch Times

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