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Judge Juan Merchan Partially Lifts Trump’s Gag Order, Here Are The Details


Judge Juan Merchan has partially lifted Trump’s gag order in his ‘Hush Money” trial.

Merchan lifted parts of the gag order that prevented Trump from speaking about the witnesses and jurors in his trial.

However, Merchan kept the portion of the gag order that requires Trump to stay silent on “lawyers and staff for the Manhattan District Attorney’s office and the court.”

The decision came just two days before Trump debated Joe Biden on CNN.

Here’s what CNBC reported:

A New York judge on Tuesday lifted parts of a gag order imposed on former President Donald Trump in his criminal hush money case, but kept some restrictions in place until Trump is sentenced.

The decision from Judge Juan Merchan came two days before Trump is set to face off against President Joe Biden in the first of two presidential debates.

Merchan struck parts of the gag order that barred Trump from making public statements about witnesses or jurors in the Manhattan Supreme Court trial, which ended on May 30 in Trump’s conviction on 34 criminal counts.

But Merchan ruled that Trump is still bound by the order’s restrictions on speaking about lawyers and staff for the Manhattan District Attorney’s office and the court, plus any of their family members, if those statements could interfere with the case. Trump is allowed to speak about Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg.

The speech limitations “were overwhelmingly supported by the record,” Merchan wrote, noting that two appellate courts in New York rejected Trump’s efforts to appeal the gag order.

Per AP:

A judge on Tuesday modified Donald Trump’s gag order, freeing the former president to comment publicly about witnesses and jurors in the hush money criminal trial that led to his felony conviction, but keeping others connected to the former president’s case off limits until he is sentenced July 11.

Judge Juan M. Merchan’s decision — just days before Trump’s debate Thursday with President Joe Biden — clears the presumptive Republican nominee to again go on the attack against his former lawyer Michael Cohen, porn actor Stormy Daniels and other witnesses. Trump was convicted May 30 of falsifying records to cover up a potential sex scandal, making him the first ex-president convicted of a crime.

In a five-page ruling Tuesday, Merchan wrote that the gag order was meant to “protect the integrity of the judicial proceedings” and that protections for witnesses and jurors no longer applied now that the trial has ended and the jury has been discharged.

Merchan said it had been his “strong preference” to continue barring Trump from commenting about jurors, but that he couldn’t justify doing so. The judge did leave in place a separate order in place that prohibits Trump and his lawyers from disclosing the identities of individual jurors or their home or work addresses. Trump lawyer Todd Blanche said after the verdict the defense team has destroyed that information.



 

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