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Jury in Trump’s hush money case continue deliberating on 2nd day

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File photo: Donald Trump

Jury deliberations continued for a second day Thursday to determine whether former U.S. President Donald Trump falsified business records to cover up hush money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels.

Trump, the first American president to face criminal charges, has repeatedly denied the allegations against him, calling them a “witch hunt” to undermine his bid for a second term in the White House.

Jury deliberations began just before 11:30 a.m. ET on Wednesday and lasted throughout the afternoon, with the jurors making several requests, including copies of testimony from Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen.

The jury returned to the courthouse in Manhattan on Thursday morning to continue deliberating, with no sign that a decision was imminent.

Trump is facing 34 counts of felony falsification of business records. To convict, all jurors must agree that Trump falsified or caused the falsification of business records with intent to defraud and to conceal another crime.

However, jurors do not have to agree which crime may have been concealed, though prosecutors have mentioned violations of state or federal election law and a possible tax crime.

“I direct you to decide this case on the evidence and the law as it relates to the Defendant here on trial,” Judge Juan Merchan told the jury on Wednesday. “You must set aside any personal opinions or bias you might have in favor of or against the Defendant and you must not allow any such opinions to influence your verdict.”

The case is focused on a hush-money payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels during Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.

Cohen claims he was working at Trump’s direction when he arranged payments totalling $130,000 to Daniels to keep her quiet about alleged sexual encounters, which could have been damaging to Trump’s bid for the White House.

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