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Even CNN’s Legal Expert Rips Judge Merchan’s Jury Instructions: “This Is CRAZY!”


The latest twist in the saga that is Donald Trump’s hush money case came in the form of rushing the jurors.

On Wednesday, Judge Juan Merchan’s jury instructions sparked quite the reaction.

He didn’t hand out instructions.

He just quickly read out a long list of at least 13 rules and hoped the jurors would remember them.

This prosecution of Trump is a witchhunt on display for the world.

And now the fate of the President supposedly lies in the hands of a jury that has to remember a laundry list of instructions, in addition to not being biased.

And with that, the plot thickens.

MSN reports the instructions given to the jurors:

Judge Juan Merchan delivered his instructions to jurors before they began deliberations in former President Donald Trump’s hush money trial.

Here’s what Merchan told the jury:

1• They must not make a decision based on biases or stereotypes;

2• They must set aside personal differences; They must not speculate about how long a potential sentence may be or what the punishment might be – that’s up to the judge;

3• They can’t hold it against Trump for not testifying;

4• The “people must prove beyond a reasonable doubt every element of the crime.” He reminds the jury it must not rest its verdict on speculation;

5• They can consider whether a witness hopes to receive a benefit related to the trial, or if they have an interest in how the case ends;

6• They cannot convict Trump on Michael Cohen’s testimony alone because he’s an accomplice, but they can use his evidence if corroborated with other evidence;

7• The jury must be unanimous if they find Trump guilty on each count – on whether he committed the crime personally, acted in concert with others or both;

8• They must determine if Trump conspired to promote someone or prevent them from public office by unlawful means;

9• They should deliberate with a view toward reaching an agreement, without surrendering individual judgment;

10• Jurors’ notes cannot be used in place of evidence;

11• The foreperson will deliver the verdict for each count after deliberations are over;

12• Jurors must surrender their phones and can only discuss the case when all 12 of them are together.

Merchan explained some key laws in the case:

13 On the law applicable to falsifying business records, Merchan told the jury:

“You must find beyond a reasonable doubt first that he solicited, requested, commanded, importuned or intentionally aided that person to engage in that conduct, and second, that he did so with the state of mind required with the commission of the offense.”

All eyes are on those jurors.

What will verdict will they come to?

Newsweek adds:

Judge Juan Merchan’s instructions to the jury in Donald Trump’s hush money case raised eyebrows from the former president and his supporters on Wednesday.

Jury deliberations began in the case on Wednesday following weeks of testimony in the first prosecution of a former U.S. president.

In this case, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg accused Trump of falsifying business documents to cover up a hush money payment made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels during his 2016 presidential campaign. Bragg’s office alleges that the payment was intended to prevent her from going public about her claims of having an affair with the former president.

Trump, the presumptive 2024 Republican presidential nominee, has denied an affair with Daniels and pleaded not guilty to all 34 felony counts. He has also accused Bragg of targeting him for political purposes, equating the trial with election interference.

Among Merchan’s instructions to the jury was that for Trump to be convicted, all jurors must agree he falsified business documents to cover up a crime. However, they do not have to agree on what the crime he was trying to cover up was, Merchan said.

This sparked backlash from some conservatives, some of whom suggested Merchan ruled the jury does not need to be unanimous. However, the jury does need to be unanimous in its verdict, or the trial would result in a hung jury.

Trump blasted the instructions in a post to Truth Social Wednesday afternoon.

“IT IS RIDICULOUS, UNCONSTITUTIONAL, AND UNAMERICAN that the highly Conflicted, Radical Left Judge is not requiring a unanimous decision on the fake charges against me brought by Soros backed D.A. Alvin Bragg. A THIRD WORLD ELECTION INTERFERENCE HOAX!” he wrote.

A post to X (formerly Twitter) from Fox News co-anchor John Roberts went viral across social media in which he stated that Merchan “just told the jury that they do not need unanimity to convict. 4 could agree on one crime, 4 on a different one, and the other 4 on another. He said he would treat 4-4-4 as a unanimous verdict.”



 

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