Manhattan grand jury begins to hear evidence in Trump hush money case: report

KEY POINTS

  • Prosecutors from the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office are set to begin presenting evidence to a grand jury as part of a criminal probe into a 2016 hush money payment that former President Donald Trump authorized to porn star Stormy Daniels, a new report said.
  • A witness in that investigation, former National Enquirer publisher David Pecker, was seen with his attorney entering the courthouse where the grand jury is meeting, according to The New York Times.
  • The move to present evidence to a grand jury is the latest event in a dramatic about-face by Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg.
  • Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen met personally with Bragg in mid-January.
Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign stop to unveil his leadership team, at the South Carolina State House in Columbia, South Carolina, U.S., January 28, 2023.
Shannon Stapleton | Reuters

A Manhattan grand jury began hearing evidence Monday in a criminal probe of a 2016 hush money payment that former President Donald Trump authorized to porn star Stormy Daniels, a new report said.

A witness in that investigation, former National Enquirer publisher David Pecker, was seen with his attorney entering the courthouse Monday where the grand jury is meeting, according to The New York Times.

The newspaper also reported that prosecutors from Manhattan’s District Attorney’s Office have recently contacted officials from Trump’s 2016 campaign about it.

A lawyer for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The move to present evidence to a grand jury is the latest event in a dramatic about-face by Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg, who as of last year was widely believed to have dropped serious efforts to potentially charge Trump with crimes related to the Daniels payment or to other acts.

Bragg reportedly revived the probe of Trump last fall, after his office obtained criminal convictions of his company, the Trump Organization, and its former chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg for a scheme to avoid paying taxes on executives’ compensation.

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