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Joseph A. Hayden, Jr. Quoted in InsiderNJ Column, “Trump Pleads Not Guilty to 34 Counts of Falsifying Business Records”


Joseph A. Hayden, Jr., Chair of the Criminal Defense and Investigations practices at Pashman Stein Walder Hayden, was quoted in an InsiderNJ column, “Trump Pleads Not Guilty to 34 Counts of Falsifying Business Records”.  The column discusses the case brought against former President Donald Trump by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

Former President Donald Trump this afternoon in a Manhattan Criminal Courtroom pleaded not guilty to 34 counts of falsifying business records to cover payment to silence an adult film actress during his 2016 presidential campaign.

“In returning a 34 count indictment [see below] against Donald Trump, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office did not pull any punches,” said Joe Hayden, veteran defense attorney and legal counsel for InsiderNJ. “They have taken and elevated those charges to a state felony on the theory that fraudulent business records were created in order to disguise a felony election violation to benefit Donald Trump’s political campaign by suppressing negative political information involving his relationship with Stormy Daniels.

“The legal theory which this indictment appears to be based on is untested, but the prosecutor’s office based every charge on the felony theory and has not pulled any punches,” Hayden added. “The prosecutor’s office also released a statement of facts which appears to be the procedure whereby the DA notifies the defendant as to the underlying prosecutorial theory. This document is robust and it talks about defendant Trump orchestrating a scheme between 2015 and 2017 to influence the 2016 presidential election by identifying and purchasing negative information which would have interfered with Trump’s electoral prospects. This detailed allegation makes apparent reference to Stormy Daniels, and a second woman who was the subject of a catch and kill scheme for negative information and even a doorman who was trying to sell information regarding a child that the defendant had allegedly fathered out of wedlock.

“The legal theory advanced by the prosecution will undoubtedly be subjected to a relentless attack, and there will also be a challenge to the right of the DA to bring a case under the statute of limitations,” said Hayden. “These decisions will have to be decided by Justice Juan Merchan and New York State Appellate courts. but factually on the basis of the number of counts in the indictment and the statement of facts which was filed the prosecution’s case appears to be far stronger than it has been credited by the pundits, even though Michael Cohen is a vulnerable witness, to say the least.

“The scary thing for Donald Trump is I suspect this may only the first domino of cases which will fall. It is probably true that this is his highest legal ground and this is the case to defend but these charges and the related evidence can well create an atmosphere, which could make it difficult for a jury to accept Trump’s defense.”

You can view the full article on InsiderNJ.

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