Former US President Donald Trump is scheduled to fly to New York City on Monday, following his recent indictment, before his scheduled arraignment regarding the hush money he paid to an adult film star before the 2016 election.
Security in Manhattan is currently increasing as they prepare for Trump to be arraigned, fingerprinted, and photographed at the downtown Manhattan courthouse this Tuesday. Trump is the first former US president to face criminal charges; his lawyers are stating that he will be pleading not guilty.
Tuesday’s arraignment will be the first time Trump appears in court and in front of a judge in this case. The specific charges included in this case have not been disclosed to the public.
According to social media reports, Trump is planning to leave his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach Monday to head for Trump Tower in Manhattan before the arraignment Tuesday morning. Trump’s office also reported that he will be returning to Florida Tuesday evening to deliver remarks Tuesday evening.
New York City police began setting up barricades along the edge of sidewalks surrounding Trump Tower this past weekend as well as the Manhattan Criminal Court building.
According to a statement from the New York Police Department, “officers have been placed on alert and the department remains ready to respond as needed and will ensure everyone is able to peacefully exercise their rights.”
Other courtrooms in the building will be shut down before the arraignment as a part of police security precautions.
Leading up to the indictment, the grand jury heard evidence regarding a $130,000 payment made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels in 2016, leading up to Trump’s presidential campaign.
Daniels claimed she was paid to remain silent regarding a sexual encounter she had with the former president in 2006, a claim Trump has denied.
This New York case is one of many legal probes against Trump; a prosecutor in Georgia is currently investigating Trump’s alleged efforts to overturn the 2020 election results.
The US Justice Department has also been investigating Trump’s actions during the 2020 election results, as well as his retention of highly classified documents during his White House exit in the beginning of 2021.
Joe Tacopina, one of Trump’s lawyers, said on Sunday he “expects more details surrounding the arraignment to be resolved on Monday, the Secret Service, which protects former presidents, also has a role to play on Tuesday.”
“I honestly don’t know how this is going to go – hopefully as smoothly as possible – and then we begin the battle to right this wrong,” Tacopina told CNN.
Tacopina added that Trump’s lawyers “will dissect the indictment once it is made public and will look at every potential issue to challenge. We anticipate making a motion to dismiss the charges at some point.”
Eric Mastrota is a Contributing Editor at The National Digest based in New York. A graduate of SUNY New Paltz, he reports on world news, culture, and lifestyle. You can reach him at email@example.com.