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Trump hush money trial live updates: Trump calls trial assault on America

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(NEW YORK) — Former President Donald Trump is on trial in New York City, where he is facing felony charges related to a 2016 hush money payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels. It marks the first time in history that a former U.S. president has been tried on criminal charges.

Trump last April pleaded not guilty to a 34-count indictment charging him with falsifying business records in connection with a hush money payment his then-attorney Michael Cohen made to Daniels in order to boost his electoral prospects in the 2016 presidential election.

Jury selection could take up to two weeks, with the entire trial expected to last between six and eight weeks.

Here’s how the news is developing. All times Eastern:

Apr 15, 10:03 AM
Proceedings are underway

“All rise,” the bailiff announced at 9:59 a.m. ET. “This is the People of the State of New York v. Donald J. Trump.”

And with that, proceedings are underway.

Members of the prosecution and the defense, including the former president, stood briefly as Judge Juan Merchan entered the courtroom and took his seat on the bench.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg entered the courtroom shortly before court went into session.

Apr 15, 9:41 AM
Trump calls trial ‘assault on America’

Former President Trump arrived at the courtroom at 9:32 a.m. flanked by members of his legal team.

In brief remarks to reporters on the way in, he called his criminal trial an “assault on America.”

“Nothing like this has ever happened before,” Trump said, marking his first comments of the day as he becomes the first former American president to face criminal charges.

“There is no case,” he said. “This is political persecution.”

Trump also attacked President Joe Biden and said the case should not go forward.

Upon entering the courtroom, he sat at the defendant’s table as his lawyers and court officers buzzed around him.

Apr 15, 9:23 AM
Members of DA’s team arrive

Several members of the Manhattan district attorney’s office have arrived in the courtroom.

Proceedings are scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m. ET.

Apr 15, 9:06 AM
Trump arrives at courthouse

Former President Trump has arrived at the courthouse in lower Manhattan.

He stepped out of his motorcade, waved, and walked into the side entrance.

A small group of supporters and protestors both cheered and booed his arrival.

Apr 15, 8:59 AM
Trump en route to courthouse

Former President Trump is en route to the courthouse in lower Manhattan for this morning’s proceedings.

The former president left for the the courthouse from Trump Tower in Midtown Manhattan.

Apr 15, 7:26 AM
Court may start with hearing on Trump testifying

Court this morning may start with a hearing over what prosecutors can ask Trump during cross-examination should he take the stand later in the trial.

The judge would hear arguments from both the people and the defense. The proceedings would then move into jury selection later in the morning.

Prosecutors have indicated they would want to cross-examine Trump on approximately “thirteen different court determinations,” including the recent civil finding that he sexually abused columnist E. Jean Carroll, the criminal conviction of the Trump Organization last year, the finding that he committed a decade of business fraud, and the dissolution of his charity, according to sources familiar with the matter.

The hearing — known as a Sandoval hearing — is standard practice before jury selection and typically occurs when a defendant signals a willingness to testify.

In a filing last month, Trump’s lawyers requested a Sandoval hearing to limit the scope of Trump’s potential cross examination, if he opted to testify.

ABC News’ Katherine Faulders contributed to this report.

Apr 15, 7:06 AM
Jury selection set to begin

Former President Trump will leave his Trump Tower apartment in Midtown Manhattan this morning and travel down to lower Manhattan for the first day of jury selection in his criminal hush money trial.

The proceedings come after Trump unsuccessfully tried three times last week to delay the start of the trial through the filing of appeals.

As a defendant in a criminal case, the former president will be required to be in court for the entire trial, which is expected to take six to eight weeks.

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