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    Donald Trump Becomes First Former US President Convicted, and Still Denies Everything

    When we talk about history makers, we talk about the likes of Donald Trump. The former US president is the first in his role to be criminally convicted, and this comes after a New York jury has him guilty of falsifying business records to commit election fraud.

    The case centres around a “hush money” scheme intended to buy the silence of a porn star in the days leading up to the 2016 election. Hectic.

    Anyway, here are seven key factors that contributed to Trump’s conviction, just months before he could potentially seek the presidency again.

    1. The Secret Recording

    A crucial piece of evidence was a secret recording in which Trump is heard discussing the payment with his lawyer, Michael Cohen. Unaware he was being recorded, Trump referenced the $150,000 payment to Playboy model Karen McDougal, who alleged a 10-month affair with him, which he denied. This recording established Trump’s involvement in the hush money scheme.

    2. The President and the Porn Star

    Stormy Daniels provided detailed and at times excruciating testimony about her encounter with Trump at a 2006 celebrity golf tournament in Lake Tahoe, Nevada. Daniels’ testimony, including a vivid description of their encounter and Trump’s efforts to keep it quiet, underscored his motivation to silence her story.

    Donald Trump Becomes First Former US President Convicted, and Still Denies Everything, EntertainmentSA News South Africa
    Picture: Donald Trump and Stormy Daniels

    3. David Pecker’s Testimony

    David Pecker, former publisher of the National Enquirer, testified about the “catch and kill” scheme used to suppress negative stories about Trump. He confirmed a $150,000 payment to McDougal to bury her story, illustrating Trump’s direct knowledge and involvement in the hush money scheme.

    4. Michael Cohen’s Account

    Michael Cohen testified that Trump directed him to pay Stormy Daniels’ hush money, emphasizing Trump’s urgency in October 2016 to keep the story quiet until after the election. Cohen quoted Trump saying, “Just do it,” highlighting Trump’s intent to commit election fraud by delaying the story’s release.

    5. The ‘Smoking Gun’ Bank Statement

    Handwritten notes from Allen Weisselberg, Trump’s chief financial officer, detailed the reimbursement plan for Cohen, including the $130,000 hush money. These notes, written on Cohen’s bank statement, which also showed the wire transfer to Daniels’ attorney, corroborated Cohen’s testimony and Trump’s approval of the reimbursement.

    Donald Trump Becomes First Former US President Convicted, and Still Denies Everything, EntertainmentSA News South Africa
    Picture: Weisselberg’s handwritten note via Sky News

    6. The ‘Body Man’ Photo

    The defence tried to discredit Cohen by pointing to a phone call made to Trump’s aide, Keith Schiller, rather than directly to Trump. However, the prosecution produced a photograph showing Schiller with Trump at the exact time of the call, undermining the defence’s attempt to catch Cohen in a lie.

    7. Testimony of Hope Hicks

    Hope Hicks, Trump’s campaign press secretary in 2016, testified that Trump told her Cohen paid off Daniels to protect him from a false allegation out of “kindness.” Hicks challenged this narrative, doubting Cohen’s altruism, which cast doubt on Trump’s defence and reinforced Cohen’s credibility.

    Donald Trump Becomes First Former US President Convicted, and Still Denies Everything, EntertainmentSA News South Africa
    Picture: Hope Hicks was Trump’s press secretary via AP

    These elements combined to paint a compelling picture of Trump’s involvement in the hush money scheme and his intent to commit election fraud, leading to his historic conviction.

    With all the evidence presented though, the former president still stands and says the trial has been rigged. Watch the video below:

    Video: The Shade Room @ Instagram

    Main Image: NBC News

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