“Good morning, Mr. Trump.” The innocuous greeting from a New York judge contradicted the somber expression on Donald Trump’s face as he sat flanked by his lawyers in the Manhattan Criminal Courts this Monday.

As his legal team fought with prosecutors over what evidence could be admitted, the first former US president to face a criminal trial seemed listen carefully and, except for a few words spoken in response to Judge Juan Merchán, in silence.

The case, which could have enormous consequences for both Trump and the country, is being heard in room 1530 inside an imposing Art Deco court covered in scaffolding on Center Street in New York City.

Trump wore his signature red tie with a white shirt and a dark blue suit and a lapel pin with the flag of the United States when Merchan declared the trial open.

The 45th president directed a defiant look at the magistrate, after having accused him of “corrupt” on his Truth Social platform after Merchán rejected repeated calls from the defense to recuse himself.

“We want justice to be done, that’s all we want,” the judge stated.

The case is expected to last up to two months and focuses on the payments made to former adult film star Stormy Daniels when Trump was closing in on his victory in the 2016 election.

Political persecution?

Trump did not interrupt the proceedings, which were largely technical, as he has done in other cases.

That includes his civil fraud trial, held in a nearby courthouse, which resulted in a $355 million civil fine that he is appealing.

Time may be against Trump, who is campaigning to oust President Joe Biden from the White House in the November election, as that jury selection alone could take up to two weeks.

More than 100 potential jurors will be present in court at one time out of a pool of 500. Trump regularly conferred with attorneys sitting on either side of him, shaking his head in irritation when prosecutors made comments he disagreed with.

“It’s true”, he muttered at one point in response to an audiotape in which He boasted about how well he treated women..

However, he did not react when prosecutors played the now infamous clip in which He described how he grabbed women by the genitals.

According to a New York Times reporter sitting near Trump, At times he seemed to fall asleep with his head bowed.

But before sitting down and folding his hands before a brown wooden table where his lawyers spread out their files, the possible Republican candidate for the 2024 presidential election set the tone of the trial.

It is an “assault on the United States” and “political persecution,” criticized the 77-year-old billionaire. who could face prison if convicted.

“It is a country that is failing, it is a country governed by an incompetent man and he is very involved in this case,” Trump said. “This is really an attack on a political opponent, that’s all, so I feel very honored to be here.”

Moments later, five photographers entered to capture the unprecedented scene: a former president sitting at the defendant’s table.

Source: https://www.noticiascaracol.com/mundo/en-silencio-y-con-expresion-sombria-asi-vivio-donald-trump-su-juicio-desde-la-mesa-de-los-acusados-cb20

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