Trump asks New York’s high court to intervene in fight over gag order in hush money trial

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Former US president Donald Trump, standing with defense attorney Todd Blanche, right, speaks after a court session for his trial at Manhattan criminal court on May 14 in New York. (AP)

NEW YORK, May 16, (AP): Donald Trump is seeking to have New York’s highest court intervene in his fight over a gag order that has seen him fined $10,000 and threatened with jail for violating a ban on commenting about witnesses, jurors and others connected to his hush money criminal trial.
The former president’s lawyers filed a notice of appeal Wednesday, a day after the state’s mid-level appellate court refused his request to lift or modify the restrictions. The filing was listed on a court docket, but the document itself was sealed and not available.
Trump presidential campaign spokesperson Steven Cheung said it’s a request for the state’s Court of Appeals to take up the matter.
“President Trump has filed a notice to appeal the unconstitutional and un-American gag order imposed by conflicted Judge Juan Merchan in the lawless Manhattan DA case,” Cheung said in a statement.
“The threat to throw the 45th President of the United States and the leading candidate in the 2024 presidential election in jail for exercising his First Amendment rights is a Third World authoritarian tactic typical of Crooked Joe Biden and his comrades,” Cheung said.
A five-judge panel of the mid-level appeals court, the Appellate Division of the state’s trial court, ruled Tuesday that Merchan “properly determined” that Trump’s public statements “posed a significant threat to the integrity of the testimony of witnesses and potential witnesses in this case as well.”

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