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Donald Trump speech live: last minute updates from Mar-a-Lago, Florida

Follow live updates as Trump becomes the first former president to be criminally indicted. He has plead not guilty to all felony counts.

Donald Trump arraignment: latest updates

The Latest from Florida

- Donald Trump pleads not guilty to 34 criminal charges with the indictment just released

- Raucous reception for Trump at Mar-a-Lago is met with a lukewarm speech

What you need to know about the case 

- Judge Juan Merchan will preside over Donald Trump's hearing this afternoon 

 What is an arraignment? Meaning and explanation of how it works

- What is the definition of hush money, and why is it illegal?

- Trump expected to be charged with around two dozen crimes including felonies

- Indictment relates to the payment of $130,000 to former porn star Stormy Daniels in the run up to 2016 presidential election

Related stories:


Not many references to the criminal case in Trump's speech

What was most interestingly ignored was large references to the criminal case being undertaken by the Manhattan District Attorney. Probably under the advice of lawyers, there was little mention of the trial except at a couple of points.

Trump called justice Juan Merchan, who will preside over the trial, a “Trump-hating judge with a Trump-hating wife whose daughter worked for Kamala Harris.”

At another moment he attacked the reputation of the District Attorney overseeing the case.

“The real criminal is the district attorney because he illegally leaked,” Trump said about Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg.

Key moments of Donald Trump’s speech at Mar-a-Lago

Donald Trump’s sensational arraignment was followed by a swift departure from New York back to Florida. Once touched down, the former president returned to his Mar-a-Lago villa to give a speech which many believed would rail against the charges levied against him.

Instead, watchers got a run-of-the-mill campaign speech with only fleeting mentions of the looming trial.


How did Donald Trump begin his speech?

He began by denying his guilt and arguing that his opponents “seek to destroy” the nation.

Much of the speech was consumed with his feeling of victimhood, that the establishment is against him, that Hunter Biden’s laptop is being supposedly ignored, that Jewish billionaire George Soros is plotting against him. The usual right-wing talking points, really.

The long list of women that have accused Trump of improper behavior

Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States, has faced multiple allegations of sexual misconduct and inappropriate behavior towards women throughout his career. The ongoing court case against him relates to money he allegedly sent to one woman to keep her quiet in the build-up to the 2016 presidential election.

However, she is not the first woman to make claims against Trump.

Read more


A pretty standard campaign speech

The rest of the speech was very rambling and paid little heed to the ongoing trial, perhaps at the behest of lawyers.


"I never thought any of this could happen" - Trump's first remarks

The only crime I have committed is to fearlessly defend our nation from those who seek to destroy it.

[Alvin Bragg isa ]Trump-hating judge with a Trump-hating wife and family.

Donald Trump, responding to 34 felony charges

Trump to speak soon at Mar-a-Lago

Donald Trump has landed in Florida and is due to speak to a packed Mar-a-Lago banquet hall any moment.

Follow along with us.


The charges in Donald Trump's indictment

The main accusation against Trump is that he "repeatedly and fraudulently falsified New York business records to conceal criminal conduct that hid damaging information from the voting public during the 2016 presidential election"

Trump and others involved in the scheme "violated election laws and made and caused false entries in the business records of various entities in New York"

The document adds that Trump and his allies "also took steps that mischaracterized, for tax purposes, the true nature of the payments"


Donald Trump appears in court for an arraignment on charges seen in this courtroom sketch. / Jane Rosenberg / Reuters

Court drawing released of Donald Trump

Trump was in court for just under an hour, where he pleaded not guilty to 34 charges. He's accused of falsifying business records to conceal crimes.

When will Donald Trump reappear in court?

Donald Trump has been charged with 34 counts of “falsifying business records in the first degree,” a Class E Felony that carries with it a maximum of four years in prison.

The 45th President of the United States is the first to be charged with any crime after leaving office, a fact that Donald Trump has tried to use to politize the case against him.

Trump pled not guilty to the more than thirty counts, meaning that unless a deal is struck with the prosecution, the former president will reappear in court later this year... but when?

Read more


More comments from DA Bragg

He said the Manhattan DA's office had a history of "vigorously enforcing white collar crime", which is how he characterised the allegations against Trump.

Trump's charges were the "bread and butter" of the DA's office's work, Bragg added.

We'll now go into some of the details about the alleged crimes.


One of the central pillars of the Trump case - money to Stormy Daniels

He could not simply say that the payments were a reimbursment for Mr Cohen's payments to Stormy Daniels. To make that true statement would have been to admit a crime. So instead Mr Trump said he was paying Mr Cohen for fictitious legal services in 2017 to cover up actual crime committed the prior year.

Alvin Bragg, Manhattan DA

Bragg begins his press conference

District Attorney Alvin Bragg is speaking now.

Bragg says this case is about 34 false statements made to cover up other crimes.

"These are felony crimes in New York State no matter who you are. We can not and will not normalise serious criminal conduct," Bragg says.

He says Trump repeatedly made false statements on New York business records and caused others to make false statements, such as his former lawyer Michael Cohen.


DA Alvin Bragg's upcoming press conference


With Trump now heading back to Florida and the indictment details being released, District Attorney Alvin Bragg will publish a statement and engage the press in the near future.

Bragg is expected to speak at 3:30 p.m. ET.



Donald Trump's indictment released

The Manhattan prosecutor's have released the details of Trump's indictment.

We'll bring you the information inside while the full document is here.


Trump leaves courtroom

Leaving the courtroom Trump ignored the gaggle of press.

He will be flying back to Florida where he is expected to deliver remarks.

Donald Trump arraignment: What are the 34 charges listed in the indictment of the former president?

The former president’s indictment listed thirty-four criminal charges, and Donald Trump pled not guilty in court. 

All counts relate to the falsification of business records and are linked to the dealings between Trump and former pornstar Stormy Daniels. Specifically, they relate to $130,000 paid before the 2016 election to keep her quiet. Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen has already been through jail for his part in the business, and now it seems his former boss could be following him into the slammer.

The indictment has not been made public, and this story is developing as the minutes pass. We will continue to bring you the latest. 


"Not Guilty" says Donald Trump

Donald Trump pleads not guilty to thirty-four criminal charges this afternoon in a Manhaatan courtroom. 


Images of Donald Trump in court emerge

The first pictures of Donald Trump's day in court emerge. 

Former president Trump is the first US head of state to be indicted on criminal charges in the country's history 

Former U.S. President Donald Trump departs from Trump Tower on the day of Trump's planned court appearance after his indictment by a Manhattan grand jury following a probe into hush money paid to porn star Stormy Daniels, in New York City, U.S., April 4, 2023. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Former U.S. President Donald Trump departs from Trump Tower on the day of Trump's planned court appearance after his indictment by a Manhattan grand jury following a probe into hush money paid to porn star Stormy Daniels, in New York City, U.S., April 4, 2023. REUTERS/Carlos Barria / CARLOS BARRIA / REUTERS

Donald Trump arrives to Manhattan Courthouse

As he entered the courthouse, former president Donald Trump threw his fist up in the air as a way to show his confidence to his supporters that had shown up to protest his arrest. 


Trump leaving Trump Tower

Donald Trump left Trump Tower at approximately 1:08 p.m. exiting the East 56th Street entrance before being chauffered to the District Attorney’s Office. He raised his fist and waved as he left the building.


Donald Trump has been placed under arrest

Former president Donald Trump will soon arrive at his arraignment hearing after having been placed under arrest. While cameras are ready to capture the moment he enters the courthouse, many speculate that the former president and his legal team will enter through a side door


"Heading to Lower Manhattan, the Courthouse. Seems so SURREAL — WOW, they are going to ARREST ME. Can’t believe this is happening in America. MAGA!"

Donald J. Trump, On Truth Social

Employees names removed from Manhattan DA's website

The names of all employees working at Manhattan District Attotney's Office were removed from the official website ahead of Trump's arraignment. The 'Meet the Team' page provided biographies of some of the top prosecutors working under District Attorney Alvin Bragg but no information could be found, only the message 'Not Found' .


Trump's lawyer labels case "a bookkeeping charge"

Donald Trump's lawyer Joe Tacopina claimed that there has been a gross misunderstanding in the charges accusing his client's involvement in a hush-money scheme during the 2016 election. Speaking to Fox New's The Five, Tacopina said:

"There is a saying in the military, 'Different rank, different spank' and there are two tiers of justice in this country. You can't tell me who the victim is. Who is the victim of this so-called crime? You can't say it. As far as we know what the inditement is, and I will speculate, is that he put the payment to the lawyer in the wrong column. He put it in a different ledger. So the lawyer took out a loan to pay off Stormy. And Trump reimbursed the lawyer. So that went in as a legal reimbursement? No, it went in as a legal expense. It's a bookkeeping charge - this isn't a publicy-traded company! There's no victim here. This goes afterwards into the filing cabinet and that's it. And they're saying that because he didn't put this down as a campaigning expense, then that's covering up the felony? That's bull... and everybody knows it".

What is the definition of hush money and why is it illegal?

Former President Donald Trump has been indicted for his alleged hush-money payments to Stormy Daniels. What exactly is hush money and under what conditions is it considered legal or illegal?

Find out more:


Appeals Court rejects Trump's bid to silence aides in Jan. 6 investigation


A federal appeals court has rejected Trump's bid to block some of his closest advisers, including former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, from testifying to special counsel Jack Smith's Jan. 6 investigation.

Three judges on the appeals court panel: Patricia Millett, Robert Wilkins and Greg Katsas are reported to have denied out Trump's emergency motion to block top aides from testifying about him. Some of the  witnesses include Trump’s former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe, former national security adviser Robert O’Brien, former Department of Homeland Security official Ken Cuccinelli and a number of White House advisers including Stephen Miller and Dan Scavino.


Trump supporters chant "USA, USA" outside Manhattan Courthouse

Trump supporters and protesters continue to gather outside the New York Criminal County Court on Centre Street, many chanting, "USA, USA" or blowing whistles that were handed out by the NY Young Republicans Club.

Rep Marjorie Taylor Greene tried to address the crowd in Collect Pond Park across the street from the Manhattan District Attorney's office but had to leave after being drowned out by hecklers, chanting abuse, shouting "Nazi" and "Go back to Georgia".


Trump expected to address the media in Mar-a-Lago

Donald Trump is expected to address the media after appearing at Manhattan's courthouse where he will be arraigned on charges relating to hush money payments to a porn star. The former US president is expected to arrive by limousine and enter the courthouse via a side entrance.

Police currently line the entrace of the New York Criminal County Court Building on Centre Street where protesters have gathered.  Trump will be charged and have his fingerprints taken then is expected to leave the courthouse and fly to his Mar-a-Lago residence where, according to the New York Times, he will speak to the media at approximately 8:15pm local time. 

Trump indictment: What is an arraignment? Meaning and explanation of how it works

Donald Trump will be arraigned on Tuesday in relation to the Stormy Daniels hush-money payments. Greg Heilman explains what the term means and what the process will involve.

More here:


Trump will be spared handcuffs, jail cell and mug shot

Donald Trump will not be handcuffed, held in a jail cell or have a police mug shot taken when he is arrested and charged with 34 felony counts for falsification of business records today.

The rules regarding the procedure which police officers must follow while making an arrest vary by jurisdiction and sometimes, the use handcuffs is not necessary. Trump will be told the reason for his arrest and read his rights. He will have the right to call a lawyer or remain silent, ie. they are not obliged to answer any questions other than providing officers with their name.



Trump posts: "Last email" before arrest

Donald Trump posted an email as part of his fundraising campaign this morning, shortly before he is due to be arrested in Manhattan

He addressed supporters in his email, posted at 9:41 a.m, titled: 'My last email before my arrest.'


Today, we mourn the loss of justice in America.

Today is the day that a ruling political party ARRESTS its leading opponent for having committed NO CRIME.

As I will be out of commission for the next few hours, I want to take this moment to THANK YOU for all of your support.

I am blown away by all of the donations, support, and prayers we have received.

It’s sad to see what’s happening – not for myself – but for our country.

This is not the America you and I once knew.

Our nation is becoming a Marxist Third World country that CRIMINALIZES dissent and IMPRISONS its political opposition.

But do NOT lose hope in America, Patriot!

We are a nation that declared its independence from the world’s biggest empire, won two world wars, and landed the first man on the moon. Resilience is in our blood.

Our movement has overcome so much. And there is no doubt in my mind that we will prevail once again and WIN the White House in 2024.

Thank you again for all of your support. I love you all!


Your favorite President, Donald J. Trump.

Who is Stormy Daniels and what is her relationship with Donald Trump?

Donald Trump is facing criminal charges for his involvement in paying hush money to Stormy Daniels. But who is she and what is her relationship to Trump and when did they meet? 

Find out more here...


Polls show Trump ahead in 2024 Republican presidential primary

According to a number of polls, Donald Trump has widened his lead over his rivals in the 2024 Republican presidential nominating contest.

Between 42-48% of Republicans claim they want Trump to be their party's presidential nominee while Florida Governor Ron DeSantis polled from 19% to 29% - down from a similar poll last month.

Trump is able to run for the  the Republican presidential nomination even though he is facing criminal charges.

Who is Alvin Bragg? The Manhattan DA behind Trump’s indictment

Manhattan district attorney Alvin Bragg sealed his name in the history books after he obtained a grand jury indictment against Donald Trump and made him the first U.S. president to ever be criminally charged.

Alvin Bragg is the 37th Manhattan district attorney, assuming the office in January 2022, succeeding Cyrus Vance Jr. He is the first black person to serve in this position. His biography calls him “a son of Harlem.”

Find out more...


Trump given the Daily Show treatment

It may not have been his first choice of topic, but from just after 90 seconds, guest host Roy Wood Jr. tackled updates on Trump's indictment, while Fox News was warning us about violence.

Who is Juan Merchán, the Latino judge who is presiding over the accusations against Trump?

The indictment of the former resident of the White House will be presided over by an experienced Latino judge who is no stranger to the world Trump.

Juan Merchán, a former assistant attorney general in-charge in Nassau County and Suffolk County and first-generation immigrant of Colombian origin who is about to have his most outstanding case to date.

Want to learn more about him? Sure you do...


Trump has "never been more focused" on winning

"I can tell you this, [Democrats] may have thought that this would deter him from going forward, from running for president [in 2024]," Lara Trump began when speaking on Newsmax on Monday.

"Maybe he would just say, 'Heck, it's not worth it.'

"You'll never see that out of this man. He is bound and determined, and I've never seen him more focused on doing something than winning the presidency this time around."

The Trump campaign is certainly looking to use these criminal proceedings to their advantage with the hardcore base. But for a Republican party that is supposed to be hard on crime, and given that Trump's financial irregularities have come at a time when many hard-working Americans have found it a struggle, can he really expect full support?

Can Trump still run for US Presidentials 2024 after being arrested?

The prospect of Trump’s arrest has led to questions about his presidential candidacy, since he has been campaigning to be the Republican bet for the White House seat in 2024.

As it turns out, being arrested for or even convicted of a crime does not disqualify a person from running for the highest office in the United States. There is no particular law or constitutional provision that prohibits a convicted or arrested person from being a presidential candidate.

The U.S. Constitution only outlines three requirements to be eligible to become president. First, that the person be a natural-born citizen of the country; second, that the person be at least 35 years old; and third, that the person have U.S. residency for at least 14 years.


Minimal camera action for Trump

It's worth being aware that last night, Judge Juan Merchan made a decision regarding the media coverage of today's arraignment.

He will permit five still photographers to take photos for a few minutes before the proceedings begin, but no video cameras will be allowed.

Although the judge acknowledged the significant nature of the indictment, as no sitting or former president has ever been indicted on criminal charges in the history of the United States, he emphasized the need to balance other interests. As a result, electronic devices will not be permitted in the main or overflow courtrooms.

What is the highest sentence Trump could receive if convicted of tax fraud? Could he go to jail?

One of the main questions on everyone's lips has been surround the sentence that Trump could receive if convicted of tax fraud.

How high could it go? Could the former president be sent to jail?

We sent our Oliver off to find out.

How far is the Trump Tower from the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office: how many streets away is it?

As mentioned earlier, Trump is staying at the Trump Tower, from where he is expected to travel to the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. Once he gets there, he will likely be photographed and fingerprinted before appearing before the magistrate for the reading of charges procedure where he will plead not guilty.

We are pretty clear now that he will not be handcuffed but we do expect there to be great anticipation surrounding his appearance. The New York Police Department has put up barricades around the sidewalks surrounding the Manhattan Criminal Court building and the Trump Tower.

But do you know how far the former president has to travel? Allow us to help...


Donald denies wrongdoing

Donald Trump has always denied the affairs and any wrongdoing. The New York prosecutor’s office previously dropped its own initial investigation at the urging of federal investigators who conducted their own investigation. But that approach ended in 2019, and in recent months, the New York prosecutor once again accelerated the investigation that began years ago.

When questioned about the payments in 2018, Donald Trump said he was not aware of the matter. However, he later acknowledged reimbursing his former fixer in what he referred to as a “simple private transaction.”

And, because they were made during the 2016 campaign, they represent illegal campaign donations. The case depends on Cohen’s testimony, which was given after cooperating with authorities and pleading guilty on eight counts in a plea deal; two of those counts were felony campaign finance violations.


The Cohen factor in Trump's case

According to District Attorney Bragg, Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s former attorney, made a $130,000 payment to Daniels on behalf of his client in 2016. According to Cohen’s testimony, the payment was made to keep secret an alleged affair the two had so as to not Trump’s 2016 presidential bid.

In 2018, Cohen, who testified before the grand jury, was sentenced to three years in prison for his role in the hush money payment.

After being released from prison in 2021, Cohen told investigators that he was instructed to pay Daniels and another woman in 2016 to keep his then-boss’ infidelities secret and avoid any damage to his campaign in progress.

Trump arraignment: what time is the court today, why is he being indited and what charges does he face?

In announcing the indictment, the office of the Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said that they had “contacted Mr. Trump’s attorney to coordinate his surrender to the Manhattan D.A.’s Office for arraignment on a Supreme Court indictment, which remains under seal.”

Find out more in Corina's summary above.


'No sweat' - cartoon Donald is fine

Clearly it's the biggest story in town today and even the cartoonists are having fun with it.

Michael de Adder has a profusely sweating Trump saying "I'm not worried" as his chosen angle for Saltwire.


Trumps whereabouts this week

The former president arrived in New York, landing at LaGuardia Airport on Monday ahead of his scheduled arraignment.

He spent the night at Trump Tower in midtown Manhattan and in the afternoon was seen given a brief wave to onlookers as he got out of his motorcade and entered the building through a side entrance on 56th Street.


Trump arraignment live: welcome

Last Thursday, Donald Trump became the first former president to be indicted on criminal charges.

This news came after the Manhattan grand jury voted to indict him for the case involving a hush money payment to adult film star Stephanie Clifford, better known for her stage name, Stormy Daniels.

It's going to be a very interesting, as well as arresting, day ahead, so strap yourself in and allow us to guide you through it for as long as it takes.