(TheRedWire.com) – In a recent legal development, a U.S. federal judge showed hesitance over shifting a case from New York state court involving Donald Trump into the federal court jurisdiction. The judge hinted that the accusations, which originated from silence money payments, didn’t seem directly related to Trump’s tenure as president.
The legal representatives of Trump proposed to shift the Stormy Daniels case into federal court, arguing that the reimbursements given to his previous aid, Michael Cohen, were handled in his presidential role to repay Cohen for the hush money paid to the adult film star.
Inside a crowded courtroom, Federal District Court Judge Alvin Hellerstein stated he was not ready to finalize a decision but saw no clear connection between the supposed behavior and any formal presidential actions. This situation marks an unprecedented case of a past president facing criminal charges.
Judge Hellerstein emphasized that there was no evidence suggesting that the state court couldn’t deliver fair justice, and his comments were preliminary opinions. A detailed written verdict is expected in the following two weeks.
Should the case get transferred to federal court—a seldom approved request—Trump’s legal team could aim for a dismissal of charges, arguing that federal officials have immunity from criminal prosecution for acts carried out in their official capacity.
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg (D) accused Trump of misrepresenting business documents concerning the payments, which were recorded as legal fees instead of reimbursement for silence money. Such actions are generally considered a minor offenses but could be escalated to a felony if tied to another criminal act.
The defense lawyers for Trump insist that the payments to Cohen were genuine legal expenditures and did not reflect any intent to hide information.
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