Negative reports eliminated: Witness heavily incriminates Trump in trial

Negative reports eliminated
Witness heavily incriminates Trump in trial

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Before his election as US President, Donald Trump did not want to leave anything to chance. He is said to have used hush money to avoid negative headlines about an affair. A witness now reveals in court: The ex-president had also made a deal with a tabloid.

A key witness in the trial against Donald Trump over hush money for a porn actress has confirmed that he helped the former US president eliminate unpleasant stories before the 2016 US election. The former editor of the pro-Trump tabloid National Enquirer, David Pecker, said in court in New York that he took part in a meeting with Trump and his lawyer Michael Cohen in mid-August 2015.

David Pecker

David Pecker

(Photo: REUTERS)

There, Pecker promised to immediately report any negative rumors about Trump or “about women who want to sell stories” to lawyer Cohen. In doing so, Cohen was able to “eliminate” potentially damaging reports.

The indictment accuses Trump of wanting to influence the outcome of the 2016 US presidential election by paying $130,000 in hush money to sex actress Daniels. The transaction itself was not illegal, but when returning the money to his lawyer Cohen, Trump falsified business documents to conceal their actual purpose, according to the allegations. This is the first criminal trial against an ex-president in US history.

Trump could face several years in prison if convicted, but the sentence could also be suspended. A fine would also be possible. The case could influence the US election campaign. Trump wants to be re-elected president in November. He had pleaded not guilty.

By questioning Pecker, the prosecution wants to support its claim that Trump’s goal was to protect his campaign from negative reports in order to have a better chance of voting in November 2016. This is intended to counteract a possible argument by the defense that Trump’s payment to porn star Daniels was simply about preventing damage to his family and that it was simply a private payment with no connection to the US election.

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