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Judge in Trump case notifies lawyers about social media post claiming knowledge of jury verdict

Josh Meyer
91影视

Editor's note: This story was updated to correct the date that former President Donald Trump was convicted by a Manhattan jury in his hush money trial.聽

The judge in Donald Trump鈥檚 Manhattan hush money case notified lawyers on both sides about a social media post alleging that one of the jurors who convicted the former president may have spoken about the verdict two days before it was rendered.

New York State Supreme Court , sent both to Trump鈥檚 primary defense lawyer Todd Blanche and Manhattan District Attorney Prosecutor Joshua Steinglass, is brief 鈥 and essentially notifies them of a comment posted to the Facebook page of the New York state court system.

The judge鈥檚 letter did not comment on the veracity of the post.

鈥淭oday, the Court became aware of a comment that was posted on the Unified Court System's public Facebook page and which I now bring to your attention. In the comment, the user, 鈥楳ichael Anderson,鈥 states: 鈥楳y cousin is a juror and says Trump is getting convicted. Thank you folks for all your hard work!!!!鈥

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The and a heart emoji, suggesting that the purported poster was happy with the verdict.

鈥淭he comment, now labeled as one week old, responded to a routine UCS notice, posted on May 29, 2024, regarding oral arguments鈥 in an unrelated case in the court鈥檚 Appellate Division, Merchan wrote.

Former President Donald Trump makes an appearance at a town hall meeting hosted by the conservative group Turning Point Action at Dream City Church in Phoenix on June 6, 2024.

The Manhattan jury voted unanimously on May 30 to convict the former president of falsifying business records to hide a hush money payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 presidential election. Trump is the first former 91影视 president convicted of a crime.

In his letter, Merchan did not comment on the veracity of the posting or say whether he believes Anderson is a relative of one of the jurors or even a real person. He also did not say whether his description of the posting as 鈥渙ne week old鈥 meant it was actually posted after the verdict, which came down on a Thursday, a week and a day before his letter. And Merchan did not say if court officials were taking any steps to address or investigate it.

Some journalists and former prosecutors immediately shot down the premise that the poster was related to a juror and had heard information about a pending verdict.

MSNBC legal correspondent Katie Phang , that someone identifying himself as Michael Anderson admitted to being 鈥渁 professional sh*tposter,鈥 or someone who likes to use social media posts to cause trouble, 鈥渄erail discussions or cause the biggest reaction with the least effort.鈥

Former federal prosecutor聽Joyce White Vance said Merchan was "smart to advise the parties鈥 about the issue now.

Former President Donald Trump is being arraigned in court Tuesday afternoon after surrendering to the Manhattan District Attorney鈥檚 Office earlier in the afternoonApr 4, 2023; New York, New York, USA; Former President Donald Trump appears in court for arraignment before Judge Juan Merchan following his surrender to New York authorities at the New York County Criminal Court. Trump appeared in court to answer charges from a grand jury investigation into payments made during the 2016 campaign to bury allegations of extramarital sexual encounters. Mandatory Credit: Curtis Means-Pool Photo via 91影视

鈥淚f it's for it as it appears, the record will be clear ... & if there's something to it, good to get it out & do justice," Vance posted on X.

"Why does ? Because Trump will raise this on appeal to argue for reversal," Vance wrote. "Now, both sides have notice of this issue & there's an opportunity to get all of the details & facts out so that if there is nothing to this, it won't affect the appeal."

Some Trump supporters immediately circulated news of the posting to claim, without evidence, that Trump didn鈥檛 receive a fair trial.

Right-wing agitator Laura Loomer included a screenshot of Merchan's letter in a post on X, formerly Twitter, saying that the news means Trump 鈥渃ould now be entitled to a mistrial because the jury pool was tainted and compromised.鈥

Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, a staunch Trump supporter, wrote on X that the incident suggested that, "The fix was in from the beginning" for Trump. Utah GOP Sen. Mike Lee described it as "" on X.

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