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Could result in automatic mistrial

Judge Juan Merchan (Court sketch)

Judge Juan Merchan

Juan Merchan, the judge in President Donald Trump’s “business expense” trial in New York, where a leftist Manhattan jury convicted him of 34 counts, has alerted lawyers in the case of possible juror misconduct.

That misconduct, apparently a discussion by a juror with a relative who reported, a day before the conviction, that the jury was going to convict Trump, could result in a mandatory new trial.

The statement posted online said, “My cousin is a juror and Trump is getting convicted.”

A commenter pointed out that that could be from any random person, without any connection to the jury.

“But I doubt it if Merchan is alerting the parties.”

The case has been filled with untoward influences. For one, Merchan repeatedly has ruled against the defense on just about every issue. He criticized the defense lawyers for objecting to much, then later stated that some prosecution testimony was questionable and the defense lawyers should have objected.

Merchan has his own appearance of conflict, as his daughter is a Democrat operative who has been fundraising off of the decisions her own father made in the courtroom against Trump.

But he refused to turn the case over to someone else.

The prosecution was by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg who said misdemeanor business records claims for which the statute of limitations had expired actually were felonies because they were part of another crime – and Merchan gave the jury permission to disagree on what that was – violating the requirement that jury verdicts be unanimous.

Bragg, further, had campaigned for office under the slogan of “get Trump,” giving the entire case a political motive.

It is considered by many, including some who don’t necessarily support Trump, to be part of a multi-case “lawfare” by Democrats against Trump to try to put him in jail during the 2024 presidential campaign. In fact, the other cases have hit roadblocks also, including one where the FBI admitted it tampered with evidence the prosecutor hoped to use against Trump.

The Gateway Pundit reported, “The jury deliberated for a little over nine hours before deciding on a still-unknown predicate crime assumed to be federal campaign violations. Judge Merchan bizarrely gave instructions to the jurors that they could all agree that a crime was committed, beyond the falsifying charges, but didn’t necessarily have to agree unanimously on which crime was committed.”

It warned the new development “could call into question the entire case. The day before the conviction was handed down, a Facebook user by the name ‘Michael Anderson’ commented that Trump was going to be convicted, sourcing that claim to his cousin, who he claimed was on the jury.”

Merchan responded with, “Today, 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, ‘Michael Anderson,’ states: ‘My cousin is a juror and says Trump is getting convicted. Thank you folks for all your hard work!!!!'”

Another commenter pointed out that “Anderson” just implicated his cousin “in a crime,” as “it is against the law for a juror to discuss the case before it is ended.’

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