Prosecutor won’t oppose Trump sentencing delay

Manhattan prosecutors said they won't opposed Donald Trump's request to delay sentencing after a Supreme Court ruling that granted broad immunity protections to presidents.

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National News

July 2, 2024 - 2:03 PM

Former President Donald Trump appears at Manhattan criminal court during jury deliberations in his criminal hush money trial in New York, Thursday, May 30, 2024. (Michael M. Santiago/Pool Photo via AP)

Manhattan prosecutors said Tuesday they would not oppose Donald Trump’s request to delay the sentencing in his hush money trial as he seeks to have the conviction overturned following a Supreme Court ruling that granted broad immunity protections to presidents.

In a letter filed with the New York court, prosecutors with Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office said they would be open to a two-week delay of the July 11 sentencing in order to file a response to Trump’s motions.

If granted by Judge Juan M. Merchan, the delay would mean that Trump won’t learn his sentence until after he is formally nominated at the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee, which starts July 15, leaving open the possibility that he could be ordered to jail during a critical stretch of his campaign.

The letter came one day after Trump’s attorney requested the judge delay the sentencing as he weighs the high court’s ruling and how it could influence the New York case.

The Trump team argues that the Supreme Court’s decision confirmed that prosecutors should have been precluded from introducing some evidence his lawyers say constituted official presidential acts, according to the letter.

In their response, prosecutors said they believed those arguments were “without merit,” but noted they were not opposed to adjourning the sentencing as the judge considers the issue.

Trump was convicted May 30 on 34 counts of falsifying business records arising from what prosecutors said was an attempt to cover up a $130,000 hush money payment to porn actor Stormy Daniels just before the 2016 presidential election.

Daniels claims she had a sexual encounter with Trump in 2006 after meeting him at a celebrity golf tournament in Lake Tahoe. Trump has repeatedly denied that claim, saying at his June 27 debate with President Joe Biden: “I didn’t have sex with a porn star.”

Prosecutors said the Daniels payment was part of a broader scheme to buy the silence of people who might have gone public during the campaign with embarrassing stories alleging he had extramarital sex. Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen paid Daniels and was later reimbursed by Trump, whose company logged the reimbursements as legal expenses.

Falsifying business records is punishable by up to four years behind bars. Other potential sentences include probation, a fine or a conditional discharge which would require Trump to stay out of trouble to avoid additional punishment. Trump is the first ex-president convicted of a crime.

Trump will be required to be present in Merchan’s Manhattan courtroom when he is sentenced.

Trump’s campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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