Trump accuses Biden of ‘border bloodbath’ as he fails to secure $464m bond in fraud case: Latest

Donald Trump speaking in Ohio at the weekend

Donald Trump has attempted to turn the tables on Joe Biden amid the furore surrounding his use of the phrase “bloodbath” by releasing a new campaign video compiling lurid news reports about “migrant crime” incidents to argue that the illegal immigration crisis at America’s southern border is the real “bloodbath”.

The distraction tactic follows a day of stunning setbacks for the Republican presidential candidate relating to the court cases he is battling.

The former president’s attorneys told an appeals court in New York on Monday that he has failed to secure a bond to satisfy the nearly half-a-billion-dollar civil fraud judgement against him.

They argued that finding a company to back a bond of over $464m is a “practical impossibility” and one that raises the possibility that New York attorney general Letitia James can begin seizing his assets, unless the court intervenes.

While his hush money trial has been pushed back into April, Judge Juan Merchan has ruled that the court can hear testimony from former fixer Michael Cohen, adult film star Stormy Daniels and ex-Playboy model Karen McDougal.

In addition, the Access Hollywood tape can also be discussed.

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Florida classified documents case: Judge asks lawyers to submit jury instructions in baffling late order

US District Court judge Aileen Cannon, who is overseeing Donald Trump’s classified documents case in Florida, issued an unusual order late on Monday concerning jury instructions at the end of the trial — even though she has not yet ruled on when the trial will take place or myriad other issues relating to the case.

Judge Cannon instructed lawyers on both sides to file their proposed jury instructions by Tuesday 2 April on two topics that are related to two defence motions to have the indictment dismissed outright, which she heard last week.

“In that hearing, she sounded sceptical that Trump’s attack on the Espionage Act, or his embrace of the Presidential Records Act, were strong enough to save the former president and likely 2024 Republican White House nominee from a criminal trial. At the same time, she suggested that aspects of Trump’s arguments might be valid enough to come into play during jury instructions.”

Her focus on jury instruction now appears to suggest she is not only thinking ahead to a trial but also anticipating its conclusion.

The two-page order she issued last night, however, suggests a degree of sympathy to some of Team Trump’s claims regarding the Presidential Records Act (PRA) allowing commanders-in-chief to declare highly-classified documents to be their own personal property, although this has been hotly disputed by national security law experts.

In the order, Judge Cannon asks the prosecutors and defence attorneys to consider two hypothetical situations.

In the first, she said, the jury would be allowed to review a former president’s possession of a classified document and make a factual finding whether “it is personal or presidential using the definitions set forth in the Presidential Records Act”.

Oddly, she then adds in a footnote that any “separation of powers or immunity concerns shall be included in this discussion if relevant”, despite the immunity question being a matter for judges, not juries, to rule on.

Her second scenario describes one in which a president “has sole authority under the PRA to categorise records as personal or presidential during his/her presidency. Neither a court nor a jury is permitted to make or review such a categorisation decision.”

That second eventuality would appear to be one in which Trump could not be convicted under almost any set of facts of improperly possessing classified documents, which has left legal commentators utterly perplexed…

Joe Sommerlad19 March 2024 12:45

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Hush money trial: Stormy Daniels says Trump compared her to Ivanka

Sarah Gibson, director of the new documentary Stormy, appeared on CNN’s OutFront with Erin Burnett yesterday to discuss Stormy Daniels and play a clip from her new film in which the porn star says Donald Trump compared her to his daughter Ivanka (!) just prior to their sexual encounter in 2006.

Here’s Gibson paying tribute to her subject, whom she says is “absolutely” ready to testify against Trump and committed to “the greater good”.

Joe Sommerlad19 March 2024 12:15

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Hush money trial: ‘Access Hollywood’ tape can be discussed but won’t be played, judge rules

The infamous Access Hollywood video in which Donald Trump bragged about grabbing women sexually without asking permission will not be shown to jurors at the former president’s hush money criminal trial, Judge Merchan also ruled yesterday.

However, he said prosecutors could still question witnesses about the tape, which was made public in the final weeks of Trump’s 2016 White House campaign.

Joe Sommerlad19 March 2024 11:45

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Hush money trial: Trump fails to block Stormy Daniels and Michael Cohen testimony

In further bad news for Trump yesterday, the judge overseeing his criminal trial stemming from hush money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels has rejected the former president’s attempts to block her testimony.

New York Judge Juan Merchan also rejected Trump’s attempts to block testimony from Michael Cohen, his former attorney who allegedly supported a scheme to bury compromising details of Trump’s extramarital affairs leading up to the 2016 presidential election.

Judge Merchan further rejected Trump’s attempts to block testimony from former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who allegedly had an affair with him before his presidency.

Joe Sommerlad19 March 2024 11:15

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What happens if Trump can’t secure his $464m bond?

Here’s more from Alex Woodward on what happens if Trump can’t secure the bond he needs to appeal his New York civil fraud case.

Joe Sommerlad19 March 2024 10:45

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Truth Social: Trump rages about New York fraud trial after failing to raise $464m bond

Unsurprisingly, the former president also spent his evening online fuming after his lawyers revealed on Monday that finding a lender to help him out with his humungous bond is proving a “practical impossibility”.

Meanwhile, this month-old clip of a not-entirely-convincing Alina Habba has not aged at all well.

Here’s more on the “billionaire” businessman’s money troubles from Alex Woodward.

Joe Sommerlad19 March 2024 10:15

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Truth Social: Trump accuses Biden of ‘border bloodbath’ in lurid campaign video

Donald Trump has attempted to turn the tables on Joe Biden amid the furore surrounding his use of the phrase “bloodbath” by releasing a new campaign video compiling lurid news reports about “migrant crime” incidents to argue that the illegal immigration crisis at America’s southern border is the real “bloodbath”.

However, the president has beaten him to it, posting an earlier video of his own incorporating Trump’s latest controversial line in a montage of other awful things he has said.

Joe Sommerlad19 March 2024 09:45

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Oliver O’Connell19 March 2024 09:15

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Full story: Trump says it’s impossible to post appeal bond for his $464m fraud judgment

The former president’s attorneys argued that finding a company to back a bond in excess of $454m plus millions of dollars in interest is a “practical impossibility,” and one that raises the possibility that New York Attorney General Letitia James can being seizing his assets unless the court intervenes.

Mr Trump faces “insurmountable difficulties” securing a bond, according to his attorneys. The former president has approached “about 30 surety companies through four separate brokers” to no avail – one week before Ms James can begin collecting.

Alex Woodward has the details:

Oliver O’Connell19 March 2024 07:45

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Ex-FBI informant flagged as ‘fraud’ years ago

A former FBI informant has been charged with lying about President Joe Biden and his son’s business dealings — but his reputation as a “liar” dates back to at least 2016, according to a report.

But long before these recent revelations, Mr Smirnov’s credibility was called into question.

Kelly Rissman has the details…

Oliver O’Connell19 March 2024 05:45


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