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News / Nation & World

No word yet on indictment of Trump

New York grand jurors told to stay home Wednesday

By Molly Crane-Newman and Rocco Parascandola, New York Daily News
Published: March 22, 2023, 5:04pm

NEW YORK — The grand jury investigating Donald Trump’s hush money deal with porn star Stormy Daniels did not meet Wednesday as the waiting game for a possible criminal indictment against the former president continues.

The New York Daily News confirmed with two sources that the session had been canceled. One said grand jurors had been notified by the district attorney’s office to stay home on “standby” and be prepared to come back today. Business Insider first reported the development.

The cancellation of the meeting — sources said the panel typically meets Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays — means the long-awaited decision on Trump’s possible indictment could be delayed to later this week or even into next week.

Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Juan Merchan will preside over the case if Trump is indicted, a source with direct knowledge told the Daily News. Merchan presided over the Trump Organization’s trial and its finance chief Allen Weisselberg’s case.

As anticipation over a possible indictment continued to build, the lower Manhattan courthouse was thronged with media waiting for a decision. The grand jury has been investigating hush money payments made to Daniels on the eve of Trump’s 2016 election as president, how Trump classified payback checks to his then-lawyer Michael Cohen, and how he hid the transaction to conceal its purpose of influencing the election.

The potential criminal charges would mark the first ever brought against a former U.S. president.

Local and federal authorities are braced for chaos to descend on the courthouse should an indictment happen after Trump on Saturday called for his supporters to “protest” his arrest. There is also heavy security around Trump Tower.

The hush money deal with Daniels has long been public knowledge. Cohen detailed the entire scheme and Trump’s role in it during his 2018 federal case when he admitted to campaign finance violations, among other crimes.

Daniels’ $130,000 payoff came as the Trump campaign learned she was ready to go public with her allegations about sleeping with Trump in 2006 at a Lake Tahoe golf tournament, according to the federal case.