Famed attorney Alan Dershowitz, who represented former President Donald Trump in his first impeachment trial, insisted that Trump, hit with a felony indictment on Thursday, could not get a fair trial in Manhattan and that his attorneys should move the trial to Staten Island or Upstate New York.
The indictment, filed under seal by the office of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, was reportedly connected to so-called hush money payments to Stormy Daniels in 2016.
“Any first-year student could win this case if the name wasn’t Donald Trump and if it wasn’t in Manhattan,” Dershowitz said to Fox News host Sean Hannity of the present indictment. “This case has to get out of Manhattan. Will it get out of Manhattan? We don’t know.”
“Would you attempt to get a change of venue?” Hannity asked.
“Of course,” Dershowitz replied. “I would try to move it to Staten Island or some upstate venue. But could you imagine a judge or a juror coming home to their wife and family and friends and saying, ‘I’m the man, I’m the woman who let Donald Trump off.’ Nobody would ever speak to them again … There’s no possibility he can get a fair trial in Manhattan.”
“He could have indicted him any day over the last seven years,” Dershowitz said of Bragg. “They deliberately violated the statute of limitations because no previous prosecutor would go after him. The very fact that the indictment came down when he was out of state proves that they could have indicted him any time before the indictment came down.”
“This is a totally bizarre, convoluted theory that Alvin Bragg has simply dreamed up, taking a misdemeanor and supercharging it into a felony,” Fox News legal analyst Gregg Jarrett added. “The law doesn’t support that.”
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Jarrett predicted Trump’s attorneys would immediately file a motion to dismiss.
“Bragg would have to prove that Trump was personally involved in falsifying records, and then he’d have to prove that Trump understood the complex campaign finance laws that nobody can comprehend and then intended to violate the those laws,” he explained. “Non-disclosure agreements in exchange for money are perfectly legal; the Federal Election Commission looked at this and they said it’s not a crime. Even if it’s not personal or a commercial reason behind it, it’s still not a campaign donation.”
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