Trump to make virtual court appearance so judge can ensure he understands protective order


(NEW YORK) — Former President Donald Trump will appear, virtually, in a Manhattan, New York court Tuesday so a judge can ensure he understands the terms of a protective order imposed in the criminal case against him.

Trump, who last month pleaded not guilty in a New York City courtroom to 34 felony counts of falsifying business records related to a 2016 hush money payment, is prohibited from sharing on social media any evidence turned over by the Manhattan district attorney during discovery.

The protective order was requested by prosecutors after Trump criticized Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, presiding Judge Juan Merchan and others associated with the criminal case.

Merchan imposed the protective order over the evidence, but stopped short of imposing a gag order, saying he wanted to give Trump the freedom to speak about the case as he campaigns for president.

Prosecutors sought Tuesday’s hearing for the judge to read Trump the terms of the order and affirm Trump’s understanding of it.

The former president is accused of concealing the true nature of reimbursement payments that he made to his then-lawyer, Michael Cohen, after Cohen paid $130,000 to adult film Stormy Daniels in the closing weeks of the 2016 presidential campaign so she would keep quiet about a long-denied affair with Trump.

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