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Trump gag order appeal dismissed by New York's top court

Justin Lane | Via Reuters
  • New York's highest court dismissed an appeal by former President Donald Trump of the gag order in his hush money trial.
  • The New York Court of Appeals declined to hear Trump's bid "upon the ground that no substantial constitutional question is directly involved."
  • The gag order was imposed before the trial where Trump was found guilty of falsifying business records related to a hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels.

New York's highest court on Tuesday dismissed former President Donald Trump's appeal of the gag order in his criminal hush money trial.

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The New York Court of Appeals in a brief decision declined to hear Trump's bid "upon the ground that no substantial constitutional question is directly involved."

The decision means Trump's gag order, which bars him from speaking about jurors, witnesses and other parties involved in the Manhattan Supreme Court case, remains in effect.

Trump's attorneys have also asked Judge Juan Merchan, who presided over the trial, to terminate the gag order because the trial is over.

The Manhattan District Attorney's office, however, urged Merchan to keep the restrictions in place, at least until after a sentencing hearing is held and certain post-trial motions are resolved.

Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung said in a statement that the former president and his legal team "will continue to fight against the unconstitutional Gag Order imposed by Justice Merchan."

The order "wrongfully silences" Trump "at the height of his campaign," Cheung said, adding that voters "have a fundamental right to hear his message."

Trump's attorney Todd Blanche and a spokesperson for the Manhattan DA declined to comment.

Trump last month was found guilty on 34 felony counts of falsifying business records as part of a scheme to hide a hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels.

The presumptive Republican presidential nominee is set to be sentenced July 11, just four days before his party holds its nominating convention.

The crime of falsifying business records in New York carries a maximum penalty of four years in prison, though Merchan could deliver a sentence that spares Trump any time behind bars.

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