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Saturday July 20, 2024

Donald Trump's appeal against gag order shot down by US court

Court of Appeal says order did not raise "substantial" constitutional issues that would require immediate legal action

By Web Desk
June 19, 2024
Former president Donald Trump seen in court during hush money trial. — AFP/File
Former president Donald Trump seen in court during hush money trial. — AFP/File

New York’s top court has declined to hear former president Donald Trump’s gag order appeal in the hush money trial.

The Court of Appeal refused to conduct hearing as it found that the order does not raise "substantial" constitutional issues that would require immediate legal action to be taken, CNN reported.

Just before Trump's trial began in March, Judge Juan Merchan had accepted prosecutors’ request for a gag order that precluded Trump from making public comments about any person related to the case, except the judge or Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg.

However, Trump repeatedly violated the gag order and was even fined $10,000.

According to court spokesperson Gary Spencer, Trump's team now has 30 days to file a motion for leave to appeal.

The Republican candidate was last month found guilty on 34 felony counts pertaining to the hidden payments made to adult star Stormy Daniels to keep their affair a secret before the 2016 US elections.

In response to the court order, Trump's campaign spokesperson, Steven Cheung, has vowed to "continue to fight against the unconstitutional Gag Order imposed by Justice Merchan".

The gag order appeal was filed in the high court in May by Trump's legal team on the basis that the order restricted Trump's "core political speech on matters of central importance at the height of his presidential campaign".