Judge alters Trump’s gag order, letting him talk about witnesses, jury after hush money conviction – EVOL

NEW YORK (AP) — A Manhattan judge on Tuesday modified Donald Trump’s gag order, freeing the former president to comment publicly about witnesses and jurors in the hush money criminal trial that led to his felony conviction, but keeping others connected to the former president’s case off limits until he is sentenced July 11.

Judge Juan M. Merchan’s decision — just days before Trump’s debate Thursday with President Joe Biden — clears the presumptive Republican nominee to again go on the attack against his former lawyer Michael Cohen, porn actor Stormy Daniels and other witnesses. Trump was convicted in New York on May 30 of falsifying records to cover up a potential sex scandal, making him the first ex-president convicted of a crime.

In a five-page ruling Tuesday, Merchan wrote that the gag order was meant to “protect the integrity of the judicial proceedings” and that protections for witnesses and jurors no longer applied now that the trial has ended and the jury has been discharged.

Merchan said it had been his “strong preference” to continue barring Trump from commenting about jurors but that he couldn’t justify doing so. The judge did leave in place a separate order that prohibits Trump and his

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