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Trump Trial Prosecution Rests Look Ahead To Closing Arguments

Trump Trial Prosecution Rests: A Look Ahead To Closing Arguments

After an extensive five weeks, the prosecution in the trial against Donald Trump has rested its case. With 19 witnesses, numerous documents, and some sensational testimony, the prosecution has handed over the proceedings to the defense team. Closing arguments are expected to take place next week.

Following the prosecution’s case, Trump’s defense team wasted no time attempting to undermine key testimonies against the former president. They called lawyer Robert Costello, who had previously advised star witness Michael Cohen but had a falling out with him.

The defense aimed to challenge Cohen’s credibility, but Costello’s testimony got off to a shaky start, provoking an angry response from Judge Juan Merchan.

Judge Merchan took action and ordered the jury out of the courtroom to admonish Costello. Unsatisfied, the judge also briefly removed the press and others from the room. Trump, speaking to reporters afterward, criticized the judge and labeled the trial a “show trial,” calling it an “incredible display” and referring to the judge as a “tyrant.”

Due to prolonged debates between the legal teams and the upcoming holiday weekend, the closing arguments, initially scheduled for Tuesday, will now likely take place next week.

Trump’s lawyer continued questioning Michael Cohen

While it remains unlikely and risky, there is still a possibility for Trump to take the stand in this historic criminal trial, making it the first-ever trial of a former US president. However, experts doubt he will choose to testify, as it could expose him to legal jeopardy and thorough cross-examination by prosecutors.

On Monday, Trump’s lawyer Todd Blanche continued questioning Michael Cohen, the former personal lawyer and fixer for Trump. The questioning lasted for hours, with a mix of digressive and challenging exchanges.

Cohen had previously testified about his involvement in the $130,000 payment to porn star Stormy Daniels to secure her silence about an alleged affair with Trump before the 2016 election.

In an attempt to discredit Cohen, Trump’s lawyers highlighted his past convictions for tax fraud and lying to Congress, portraying him as a habitual liar and criminal.

Blanche also explored Cohen’s loyalty to Trump and then to the prosecution, aiming to present him as self-serving and willing to go to great lengths to achieve his goals.

Blanche’s questioning sought to provoke Cohen, who is known for having a short temper, but the witness largely maintained his composure.

Cohen said his life was turned upside down

Cohen’s account aligned with the testimonies of Stormy Daniels and David Pecker, the tabloid boss who claimed to have collaborated with Trump and Cohen to suppress negative media coverage during Trump’s presidential campaign.

After Blanche concluded his questioning, the prosecution returned for redirect, during which prosecutor Susan Hoffinger asked Cohen about the impact of the entire experience on his life.

Cohen expressed genuine emotion in his voice, stating that his life had been turned upside down, and he had suffered losses such as his law license, financial security, and family’s happiness.

Meanwhile, Trump has voiced frustration that his potential 2024 election campaign for another White House term is being hindered by the ongoing trial, which requires his attendance every day.

He complained to journalists about not being able to engage in politics due to spending the past four weeks in a cold, dark room, describing it as unfair.

Notably, a group of prominent Republicans has stood behind Trump as he addresses reporters outside the courtroom, claiming that the case has been politicized.

The trial will now move forward with the defense presenting its case, followed by closing arguments next week. The outcome of this trial will have significant implications for the former president and the future of American politics.

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