On Monday, April 15, 2024, The Hill reported that Judge Juan Merchan declined former President Donald Trump’s latest request to recuse himself from presiding over Trump’s criminal trial related to allegations of falsifying business records.

However, Trump’s legal team filed another recusal motion last week, attempting to force Judge Merchan to remove himself from the case. As he had done previously, Trump took aim at Merchan’s daughter’s employment at a progressive digital agency that works with prominent Democrats, including some who have expressed criticism of Trump.

However, Judge Merchan swiftly denied the recusal motion from the bench on Monday morning. In his denial, Merchan said the defense’s motion relied on “a series of references, innuendos, and unsupported speculation.” This was the second time Trump requested Merchan’s recusal – the judge had rejected a similar claim last year.

The judge noted he had received guidance from a state ethics advisory committee last year that neither his daughter’s job nor the $35 in political donations he made prior to the case did not require him to recuse himself due to a lack of clear conflict of interest or bias.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, whose office is prosecuting the case, opposed Trump’s latest recusal attempt, saying it was simply another delaying tactic from the defense.

Trump is facing 34 felony counts related to allegations he falsified business records through his involvement in a hush money payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels days before the 2016 election. He has pled not guilty to all charges. Jury selection is expected to last around two weeks before opening statements commence in the highly anticipated trial.



Source: The Hill