Former United States President Donald Trump claims he will be arrested on Tuesday as part of investigations into a case that involves him allegedly paying hush money to adult film star Stormy Daniels before the 2016 presidential election.
Trump has called on his supporters to protest ahead of any arrest attempts.
Here is a timeline of events in this case since the controversy began more than five years ago:
The Wall Street Journal publishes details of how Trump, weeks before the 2016 polls, allegedly paid $130,000 to stop Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, from going public about an alleged sexual encounter with him in 2006.
In a statement to the New York Times, Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen says he paid Daniels $130,000 in a transaction in which “neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign” was involved.
Daniels sues Trump over a non-disclosure agreement, stating the former president never signed a deal for her to keep silent about their “intimate” relationship.
The now 44-year-old says on the CBS show 60 Minutes that she and Trump had sexual relations only once, but that she had seen him on other occasions and he had kept in touch with her.
Speaking to reporters, Trump denies any knowledge of a payment made to Daniels in exchange for her silence.
In a separate case, Daniels files a defamation lawsuit against Trump after he says in a tweet that her claims of being threatened by a man over the affair was a “con job”.
In a series of tweets, Trump admits a payment was made to Daniels by Cohen, but asserts no election campaign funds or contributions were used.
Cohen pleads guilty to campaign finance violations, tax evasion and other charges, saying he made payments to influence the 2016 election at the “direction of a candidate for federal office”.
Cohen says he paid $130,000 and $150,000 to Daniels and nude model Karen McDougal, respectively, upon Trump’s request.
A California court dismisses Daniels’ defamation suit against Trump, ordering her to pay Trump’s lawyer fees.
Cohen is sentenced for three years behind bars, reporting to prison in May 2019.
In his testimony to the US Congress, Cohen says Trump called him and asked him to mislead the public about hush money paid to Daniels and asked him to say that the president “wasn’t knowledgeable” about the payments.
Judge James Otero, who presided over the defamation suit brought by Daniels, also dismisses her case against Trump over ending the non-disclosure agreement.
A New York City court unseals documents related to Cohen’s case, revealing that Trump was part of efforts to keep alleged affairs secret, including that with Daniels, before the 2016 election.
In a setback for the former president, the US Supreme Court rejects Trump’s arguments for presidential immunity and ruled that a New York prosecutor can obtain his financial records.
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr and a House of Representatives committee had subpoenaed Trump’s accounting firm Mazars USA LLP for 10 years of his financial records.
Trump lambasts the decision, arguing he is being treated unfairly and being persecuted for political reasons.
Daniels loses her appeal in her 2018 defamation suit, and she is ordered to pay nearly $300,000 in lawyer fees. Trump calls the ruling “a total and complete victory and vindication”.
The New York Times reports on March 9 that a grand jury has offered Trump an opportunity to testify – signalling an investigation into the hush money case may soon end in a criminal case.
Trump’s lawyer Joseph Tacopina confirms that the Manhattan district attorney’s office invited the former president to testify.
On March 18, Trump claims he will be arrested in the coming days. He calls on his supporters to come out in protest.
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