Donald Trump is expected to turn himself in to authorities after he was charged with criminal charges over alleged hush money payments to an adult film actress.
Let’s take a look at the key data casewhich could lead to the first criminal prosecution of a former US president.
The porn actress was paid $130,000 (£105,000) to keep quiet about an awkward and unexpected sexual encounter with Trump during a celebrity golf outing in Lake Tahoe in 2006.
The former US president denies having sex with her.
ms danielsStephanie Clifford, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, received the money in the final weeks of Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.
Previously, her representatives said she was willing to make a formal statement to the National Enquirer tabloid or television confirming the sexual relationship with Trump.
Who is Stormy Daniels?
Ms McDougall, a former Playboy model, said she had a 10-month affair with Trump in the mid-2000s.
In 2016, the National Enquirer’s parent company paid her $150,000 (£121,000) for the rights to her story about the alleged relationship.
The story was suppressed by the newspaper and was not published until after the election.
American Media acknowledged that its payments to Ms McDougall were made specifically to assist Trump’s campaign and were “consistent” with his campaign.
The former president has denied any extramarital affairs.
Donald Trump Expected to Surrender After Indictment – Watch for Live Updates
Cohen A lawyer by training, he worked for the Trump Organization from 2006 to 2017 and served as a go-between for the former president.
He once proudly declared that he would “take a bullet” for Trump.
Cohen took the lead in arranging the payment to Ms. Daniels, to be transferred through a company he set up to do so.
He said he was then reimbursed by Trump, and that Trump’s company recorded the payment and related bonuses as “legal expenses.”
A few months earlier, Cohen had also arranged for the publisher of the National Enquirer to pay Ms. McDougall a similar $150,000 for the rights to her story about an alleged affair with Trump.
Cohen recorded a conversation in which he and Trump discussed the arrangement to pay Ms. McDougall through the tabloid publisher.
At one point, Trump said: “What are we going to pay for this? A fiftieth?”
Michael Cohen begins three-year prison sentence
As the longtime chief financial officer of the Trump Organization, Mr. Weisselberg made key decisions about how the company keeps its books, but did not appear to cooperate with the hush money probe.
In testimony before Congress in 2019, Cohen said it was Mr. Weisselberger who decided how to arrange his compensation to Ms. Daniels. Weisselberg paid it off within 12 months “so that it looked like a hire,” Cohen said.
Federal prosecutors granted Weisselberg limited immunity from prosecution in exchange for his testimony in a grand jury investigation into the payments.
Allen Weisselberg sentenced to five months in prison
Mr. Pecker is a former publisher of the National Enquirer and a longtime friend of Trump.
He met Cohen during Trump’s 2016 campaign and said the Enquirer’s parent company would help buy and bury potentially damaging stories about Trump’s relationships with women.
Mr. Pecker, who was Enquirer’s chairman and chief executive at the time, agreed to keep Cohen informed of any such stories. In June 2016, he alerted Cohen that attorneys for Ms. McDougall had approached the publication to try to sell her story about her alleged affair with Trump.
The National Enquirer’s then-owner American Media later agreed to pay Ms. McDougall $150,000 for a “limited right to life” for a story about her alleged relationship with the former president.
Federal prosecutors decided not to charge American Media in 2018 in exchange for its cooperation in the campaign finance investigation that led to Cohen’s guilty plea and prison term.
Mr. Bragg, Manhattan’s first black district attorney, could become the first prosecutor in the world to bring criminal charges against a former US president.
The Democrat inherited the investigation into Trump when he takes office in January 2022.
Mr. Bragg, who grew up in Harlem during the crack cocaine epidemic of the 1980s, said he was held at gunpoint six times — three times by police.
A graduate of Harvard Law School, he has served as a federal prosecutor, chief deputy state attorney general, civil rights attorney and law school professor.
Mr. Tacopina, a Brooklyn-born attorney known for his well-heeled suits and celebrity clients, is the public face of Trump’s defense team.
Trump is only the latest high-profile person to turn to Mr. Tacopina, whose past clients include rappers Meek Mill, Jay-Z and A$AP Rocky and baseball superstar Alex Rodriguez.
In recent weeks, Mr. Tacopina has been on television news shows defending the former president, questioning Mr. Bragg’s investigation and motives, challenging Cohen’s credibility as a star witness and suggesting that Trump was being blackmailed.
But before he began representing Trump, he had said the payments to Ms Daniels appeared to be “illegal” and a “potential campaign finance problem”.
Ms. Necheles, a defense attorney in New York City, represented Trump’s companies in last year’s tax fraud trial and has been working behind the scenes on the former president’s criminal defense, meeting with prosecutors to try to block potential charges.
In the past, she represented the late Genovese crime family underdog Venero Mangano, better known as Benny Eggs, and defended John Gotti’s attorney, Bruce Cutler, in a contempt case in the early 1990s.
Mr Bragg hired Mr Colangelo in December to lead the investigation.
They previously worked together as senior officials in the office of New York Attorney General Letitia James on Trump-related matters.
While at the attorney general’s office, Mr. Colangelo was involved in a lawsuit that led to the closure of Trump’s charitable foundation for misuse of funds.
He is also part of a wave of state lawsuits opposing Trump administration policies, resulting in dozens of lawsuits challenging everything from diluted environmental standards to changes to the U.S. Postal Service ahead of the 2020 election.