Trump to make second Stormy Daniels ‘hush money’ court appearance

By Josephine Stratman, New York Daily News

Donald Trump was set for a virtual Tuesday appearance in a Manhattan courtroom, with a judge expected to warn the former president to abide by new restrictions set in his “hush money” case.

Judge Juan Merchan has already imposed a protective order on Trump and his team to block them from talking about evidence or witnesses in the case on social media.

He agreed to take the additional step of personally addressing the issue on the restrictions on Trump after Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s team expressed their concerns about the case.

Trump could face contempt charges if he uses evidence shared by prosecutors in pre-trial discovery to intimidate witnesses or anyone else involved in the case. The order would also bar Trump or his layers from sharing evidence with third parties or posting information on social media.

Prosecutors requested the protective order based on Trump’s “longstanding and perhaps singular history” of using social media to inflame those both with and against him.

Both Bragg and Merchan have received threats over the case.

The judge’s mandate doesn’t prevent Trump from speaking about the prosecution where he’s charged with paying off porn star Stormy Daniels, a Playboy model and a Trump Tower doorman as part of a “catch and kill” scheme intended to cover up damaging information during his 2016 campaign.

Prosecutors allege he illegally disguised payments to his former lawyer Michael Cohen. with the money then paid to Daniels to buy her silence about an alleged affair in 2006.

Last month, the former president pleaded not guilty to 34 felony counts of falsifying business records in his unprecedented first day in court.

Ahead of last month’s arraignment, Trump warned on social media of “death and destruction” if charges were to be filed and described Bragg as an “animal” in comments widely derided as racist.

This case is one of several currently facing Trump during his campaign for reelection next year. He was recently found liable for battery and defamation in connection with an alleged sexual assault of writer E. Jean Carroll.

And the Justice Department was examining whether he mishandled or obstructed classified documents at Mar-a-Lago and his potential role in efforts to overturn the 2020 election results and in the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

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