Trump May Have Just Brazenly Violated His Gag Order In New York Criminal Case

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On Saturday, former President Donald Trump took to his personal account on his knock-off social media site Truth Social to complain about his criminal case quickly approaching a scheduled trial next week in New York City… and some suspect he may have violated a gag order recently imposed on him by presiding Judge Juan Merchan.

The order blocks a range of public attacks from Trump, including potential targeting of witnesses — whether known or even just reasonably foreseeable — concerning their “potential participation in the investigation or in this criminal proceeding,” and Trump was complaining Saturday about Michael Cohen, an ex-“fixer” for the former president who’s become a key witness for prosecutors.

“Has Mark POMERANTZ been prosecuted for his terrible acts in and out of the D.A.’s Office. Has disgraced attorney and felon Michael Cohen been prosecuted for LYING? Only TRUMP people get prosecuted by this Judge and these thugs! A dark day for our Country. MAGA2024!!!” Trump complained to his followers.

Cohen, in fact, already faced prosecution. (A past criminal case against him dealt in part with his role in the same hush money scheme that provided the backdrop for Trump’s New York City case.) And Cohen is already an expected witness at trial, with the judge explicitly okay’ing trial testimony from the former lawyer in addition to Stormy Daniels, the woman who allegedly had an affair with Trump and received the pre-2016 election money. Is Trump’s Saturday commentary about Cohen reasonably understood as in connection to participation in the case by the ex-president’s past ally?

“There is a gag order that prohibits Trump from making public statements about witnesses concerning their participation at trial. Questioning their credibility would seem to cross that line,” said former federal prosecutor Joyce White Vance on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.

“Trump attacking a key witness on eve of trial seems to run up against his gag order,” legal journalist Kyle Cheney posited, also on Saturday.