BREAKING: Trump contempt hearing over social media posts to begin Tuesday morning before trial resumes

Judge Juan Merchan told the jurors to report to court at 11 am, with the hearing going until 2 pm. The contempt hearing will take place at 9:30 am.

Hannah Nightingale Washington DC

Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg’s falsified business records case against Donald Trump will resume Tuesday morning, after the court holds a contempt hearing over posts made by Trump on social media that prosecutors allege violated the gag order placed on him. 

According to CNN, Judge Juan Merchan told the jurors to report to court at 11 am, with the hearing going until 2 pm. The contempt hearing will take place at 9:30 am. 

During the first day of the trial on April 15, prosecutors with Bragg’s office said that Trump violated the gag order three times, and urged Merchan to hold Trump in contempt over the three social media posts. they urged Merchan to fine Trump $1,000 for each violation. 

According to the New York Times, Bragg’s team alleged during Thursday’s hearing that Trump violated the gag order seven more times.  

The initial batch of alleged violations includes a repost of Michael Avenatti, who was talking about Michael Cohen and Stormy Daniels, who are expected to be witnesses in the trial, a post of Stormy Daniels denying the alleged affair between herself and Trump, and a post criticizing former Manhattan prosecutor Mark Pomerantz. 

Merchan placed a gag order on Trump in late March, prohibiting him from making statements about witnesses in the case as well as lawyers involved with "intent to materially interfere" with the case. The order was expanded in April to include "family members of any counsel, staff member, the Court or the District Attorney." 

The latest batch of alleged gag order violations includes a link to a New York Post article calling Cohen a "serial perjurer" which was posted both to his campaign website and Truth Social, and a link to a National Review article titled "No, Cohen’s Guilty Plea Does Not Prove Trump Committed Campaign-Finance Crimes." 

Emil Bove, a Trump lawyer, told Merchan that Trump’s comments should be considered political speech. 

A ruling on the issue may not be delivered on Tuesday, and it is unclear when the ruling will come down. 

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