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HomeNewsInternational NewsTrump pleads not guilty to 34 felony charges

Trump pleads not guilty to 34 felony charges

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By MICHAEL R. SISAK, ERIC TUCKER, JENNIFER PELTZ and WILL WEISSERT

NEW YORK (AP) — Former President Donald Trump pleaded not guilty Tuesday to 34 felony counts of falsifying business records, according to two law enforcement officials familiar with the matter.

The plea came during a brief arraignment in a lower Manhattan courtroom as Trump faced a grand jury indictment arising from a hush money payment to a porn actor during Trump’s 2016 campaign.

The two officials who confirmed the plea spoke on condition of anonymity to The Associated Press because prosecutors had not yet released the indictment publicly.

The arraignment, though procedural in nature, amounts to a remarkable reckoning for Trump after years of investigations into his personal, business and political dealings. The case is unfolding against the backdrop not only of his third campaign for the White House but also against other investigations in Washington and Atlanta that might yet produce even more charges.

A silent and stone-faced Trump, his lips pursed in apparent anger, entered the courtroom shortly before 2:30 p.m. without saying anything. Minutes earlier, he narrated his feelings in real time, describing the experience as “SURREAL” as he traveled from Trump Tower to lower Manhattan to face a judge as the first former president in American history to be criminally prosecuted.

It represents the new split-screen reality for Trump as he submits to the dour demands of the American criminal justice system while projecting an aura of defiance and victimhood at celebratory campaign events.

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