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Trump announces appeal of 'unconstitutional gag order' after judge threatens jail time: 'sham'

Trump announces appeal of 'unconstitutional gag order' after judge threatens jail time: 'sham'

Former President Trump announced Thursday morning that his defense team in the NY v. Trump case has filed a motion to appeal the "unconstitutional gag order" that was imposed on the 45th president, restricting what he can publicly say about the case.  

"I just want to let you know that we've just filed a major motion in the appellate division concerning the absolutely unconstitutional gag order, where I'm essentially not allowed to talk to you about anything meaningful that's going on in the case. And many good things are going on with the case. It shouldn't have been filed," he said. 

Trump is under a gag order that prevents him from making or directing others to make public statements about witnesses and their potential participation or remarks about court staff, DA staff or family members of staff. The judge in the case has ruled Trump has violated the order 10 times, resulting in a total of $10,000 in fines, and threatened jail time if Trump continues to violate the order. 

Former President Trump sits in the courtroom during his criminal trial in New York City on April 22. (Reuters/Brendan McDermid/Pool)

Trump also read legal experts' commentary on the case to members of the media on Thursday, when legal scholars such as Alan Dershowitz and Jonathan Turley slammed the trial. 

"'This is a Frankenstein case. They took a dead misdemeanor, they attached it to a dead, alleged federal felony and zapped it back into life. So many of us are just amazed to watch this actually walk into court because it's not a recognizable crime that any of us have seen," Trump said, quoting Fox News contributor Turley. 

"'I've been doing this for 60 years, and I don't understand what crime he's been charged with. Nobody understands this. I just don't get the crime. There's no evidence of any crime whatsoever. This is a sham,'" Trump continued, quoting Dershowitz. 

Trump is back in a Manhattan courtroom on Thursday, after former pornographic actress Stormy Daniels took the stand on Tuesday, when she went into detail about her alleged affair with the then-real estate tycoon in 2006. 


Stormy Daniels shown on the stand in court in sketch

In this courtroom sketch, Stormy Daniels is questioned by prosecutor Susan Hoffinger during former President Trump's criminal trial in New York City on Tuesday. (Reuters/Jane Rosenberg)

Daniels detailed to the court that she met Trump in 2006 at Lake Tahoe in Nevada during a celebrity golf tournament. She alleged that the pair had sex in Trump's hotel room during the event, which Trump has repeatedly denied in public comments. Daniels' testimony also included describing to the court how she got into the pornography business after working as an exotic dancer as a teenager.


Legal experts on Tuesday sounded off on social media that Daniels’ testimony was irrelevant to the case and that it should not have been admitted into the record.

Stormy Daniels

Stephanie A. Gregory Clifford, known professionally as Stormy Daniels, attends Exxxotica Expo at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Illinois, on April 22, 2023. (Jacek Boczarski/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

"I used to try cases for a living. I still have a pretty good sense of what evidence is relevant, what is prejudicial and what is completely over-the-top inadmissible. What the judge is letting in today in the Trump trial in NYC will be remembered as a dark stain on our judicial system, reminiscent of corrupt dictatorships. Shame on the prosecution for undermining our judicial system," David Friedman, a lawyer and former U.S. ambassador to Israel during the Trump administration, posted on X


Daniels' testimony Tuesday was followed by the Trump defense team moving for a mistrial that was ultimately denied by presiding Judge Juan Merchan. 

Judge Merchan poses for photo

Judge Juan Merchan in his chambers in New York on March 14. (AP Photos)

"THE PROSECUTION, WHICH HAS NO CASE, HAS GONE TOO FAR. MISTRIAL!" Trump posted on Truth Social on Tuesday.

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