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Turley: ‘Considerable’ Chance Appeals Court Overturns Trump’s Conviction

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


Legal expert and constitutional law professor Jonathan Turley said following former President Donald Trump’s guilty verdict in his hush money trial on Thursday that there are grounds for an easy reversal on “procedural and constitutional” grounds.

Turley spoke to Fox News outside the Manhattan courtroom moments after Trump became the first former U.S. president to be convicted on felony charges.

The jury found him guilty on all 34 counts, though for weeks, legal experts, including Turley, have noted that the case brought by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg was based on manufactured charges while presiding Judge Juan Merchan was severely — and perhaps unconstitutionally — hampering Trump’s defense.

I think the level of reversible error here really is quite considerable. It runs the waterfront of procedural to constitutional problems, including federal constitutional violations,” Turley began. “I don’t even see how you can meet the unanimity requirement in the way that this thing was instructed.

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“Yeah, they were unanimous that some crime was committed on the secondary crime, but it’s apparently between the jurors and God as to what that crime was unless there is going to be some release of a jury form. We have not seen that jury form,” he continued, referencing a document that could explain on what basis jurors found Trump guilty.

“I think that, in the end, we were going to have a reversal. I’m fairly confident of that. Now, in the New York appellate system, they have a rule for Trump. They are very good lawyers in the New York system and credible people who want the system to work the way it is designed,” Turley continued. “I am eternally an optimist. I was an optimist about a hung jury. And I’m an optimist now about the appellate judges.

“I think at some point, people will step forward and say enough. You know, hating this man is not enough to forget the lack of the evidence. And once again, I do not blame this jury. They were given instructions that made it very easy to convict. And some of them might not have seen a real option not to, given how low these standards seem,” he added.

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WATCH:

Trump took to his Truth Social platform to chastise the ruling and offer up some additional details:

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My bookkeeper called a “Legal Expense,” on the “tiny” description line of the Ledger, a “Legal Expense,” openly paid to my lawyer, at that time a fully accredited one. I was not involved in that designation, but what else would you have called it? It was, in fact, a LEGAL EXPENSE. That is the so-called “CRIME.” On top of that, I wasn’t allowed by the judge to use, in any form, the standard RELIANCE ON COUNSEL DEFENSE (ADVICE OF COUNSEL!). My lawyer, at the time, did virtually everything on the NDA (NON-DISCLOSURE AGREEMENT), and I assumed that what he did was correct. I did nothing wrong, and frankly, there was nothing done wrong – NDA’s are standard, commonly used, and LEGAL. MAGA2024! WITCH HUNT! IF THIS CAN HAPPEN TO ME, IT CAN HAPPEN TO ANYONE!

Investigative reporter Julie Kelly took to the X platform to criticize not only the legal process used to convict Trump, but Republicans in Congress who she says enabled it.

“Republicans stood silent for 3 years as Biden’s DOJ/FBI investigated, raided, charged, prosecuted and incarcerated 1,400+ Trump supporters for Jan. 6. They not only tacitly endorsed it but funded it,” she wrote. “Of course this unprecedented conviction of Donald Trump would be the natural result. Today’s verdict is as much an indictment of GOP weakness and cowardice as it is the lawless Marxist tendencies of the Democrats.”

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