New York Police Department staff install barricades around the Lower Manhattan court complex ahead of former President Donald Trump's anticipated indictment.
by WorldTribune Staff, March 21, 2023
As crime continues to escalate in New York City, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is letting more and more criminals off the hook. Bragg has downgraded more than half of his felony cases to misdemeanors.
"Now he’s elevating a misdemeanor to a felony that the feds refused to prosecute to indict President Trump," journalist Greg Price tweeted.
The potential charges stem from the $130,000 hush money payment then-Trump lawyer Michael Cohen made to adult film star Stormy Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford, in the weeks leading up to the 2016 presidential election in exchange for her silence about an alleged sexual encounter with Trump in 2006.
Federal prosecutors in the U.S. attorneys office for the Southern District of New York in 2019 opted out of charging Trump related to the Daniels payment.
"The legal theory underlying your reported prosecution appears to be tenuous and untested," House Judiciary Committee chair Jim Jordan wrote in a letter calling on Bragg to appear before the committee.
The statute of limitations on a matter of "falsifying business records," which Jordan said "would ordinarily be a misdemeanor subject to a two-year statute of limitations," would have "expired long ago."
"State law, however, allows a district attorney to ‘elevate nominal misdemeanor conduct’ to a felony charge if the ‘intent to defraud includes an intent to commit another crime or to aid or conceal the commission thereof,’" Jordan wrote, noting that showing would extend the statute of limitations to five years.
"Criminals roam free. Political opponents go to jail," Price added. "This is your third world country."
Last year, Bragg downgraded 52 percent of felony cases to misdemeanors, according to data published on the DA's website. The data also revealed that Bragg declined to prosecute 35 percent more felony cases in 2022 than were was prosecuted pre-pandemic in 2019.
So, while thousands of criminals roam free thanks to Bragg's soft-on-crime approach, New York police on Monday began installing barriers around the Manhattan court complex where Trump is expected to be indicted.
The former president announced over the weekend that he expects to be arrested this week as a grand jury prepares to hear from the final witness in an investigation into hush money allegedly paid to porn star Stormy Daniels.
Dennis Quirk, president of the New York State Court Officers, told DailyMail.com that officials need to discuss how to bring Trump and his lawyers into the courthouse safely, given the likelihood there will be protesters gathered outside.
"We’re going to have to close of the street around the courthouse so somebody doesn’t put a car there with a bomb," he said. "How are you going to get Trump to the building, how are you going to get him into the building and court, how are you going to get him out safely? There’s going to be people protesters in the street."
Quirk said Bragg exacerbated the problem by leaking it out last week that he was meeting with the NYPD to discuss how to handle a possible indictment.
Supporters have already begun appearing outside Trump Tower in New York and around his Mar-a-Lago home in defense of the former president.
Jordan is demanding that Bragg testify before Congress in the wake of his "unprecedented abuse of prosecutorial authority."
The Ohio Republican sent a letter, exclusively obtained by Fox News Digital, to Bragg Monday morning demanding his testimony. The letter was also signed by House Oversight Committee chair James Comer, and House Committee on Administration chair Brian Steil.
Jordan warned Bragg that if news reports of a possible Trump indictment are accurate, Bragg’s actions "will erode confidence in the evenhanded application of justice and unalterably interfere in the court of the 2024 presidential election."
"In light of the serious consequences of your actions, we expect that you will testify about what plainly appears to be a politically motivated prosecutorial decision," Jordan wrote.
Trump released the following statement on Monday:
George Soros’ Hand-Picked Radical Left Democrat Prosecutor
On May 8, 2021, a political action committee backed by billionaire George Soros, Color of Change, endorsed Bragg in the DA race and pledged $1 million to support his election. According to public filings, George Soros made a $1 million donation to Color of Change PAC on May 14.
In a 2022 WSJ op-ed, Soros admitted he has “supported the election (and more recently the re-election) of prosecutors” and soft-on-crime district attorneys.
During his primary election, a woman made a “disturbing allegation” against Bragg. She came forward to Color of Change. The PAC immediately halved its funding to Bragg and the allegation was never disclosed publicly.
Bragg hired a PR crisis-management team after taking office.
BRAGG HAS BEEN ROUNDLY CRITICIZED FOR PROSECUTING INNOCENT VICTIMS AND BEING SOFT ON CAREER CRIMINALS
In July 2022, Bragg dropped the disgraceful murder charge against 61-year-old bodega worker Jose Alba for stabbing an ex-con in an act of self-defense. Alba spent five days on Rikers Island after being assaulted at his own convenience store.
Later in December 2022, Bragg declined to prosecute a woman, Tracy McCarter, who stabbed her husband to death.
Bragg freed without bail a 16-year-old boy who was filmed brutally assaulting and beating an NYPD cop.
Bragg gave a plea deal to a man with grand larceny charge, letting him go without any jail time, so he could later assault a random woman on the street.
Bragg downgraded an armed robbery charge to a misdemeanor after a knife-wielding ex-con threatened a drugstore worker.
Bragg released without bail a man who attempted to stab Rep. Lee Zeldin at a gubernatorial campaign stop.
Bragg is so soft on career criminals that a small group of 10 repeat offenders have a combined total of 500 arrests.
Seven NYPD officers were shot in the first weeks of Bragg’s term.
BRAGG IS A WOKE TYRANT WHO HAS POLITICIZED THE JUSTICE SYSTEM
State Supreme Court judge Diane J. Kiesel blasted Bragg’s decision not to prosecute Tracy McCarter, accusing Bragg of being pressured by his own supporters, as well as those of McCarter’s. Color of Change ran an ad pleading for Bragg to drop the charges.
ROGUE PROSECUTOR ALVIN BRAGG HAS BEEN TRYING TO TAKE DOWN TRUMP FOR MANY YEARS
During a media circuit following the Trump Organization conviction in December 2022, Bragg said he was “gratified” that the “the broader public got to see the inner workings of the Trump Organization on display.”
Bragg proudly declared that he is leading the charge in taking down President Trump, saying:
“I think I'm probably the only lawyer in the country who can say, we are right now, prosecuting a criminal case against the Trump organization. When I was in leadership at AG's office, we did the Trump University case. When I was in leadership at AG's office, I led the Trump Foundation team.”
Bragg said he was the most qualified candidate to prosecute Trump, saying: “I have a history of doing complex litigation — some of that involving Trump himself — so I led a Trump Foundation case where we sued him and family members and the foundation for their misconduct, led that to a successful conclusion. We also sued the Trump administration over 100 times on programmatic matters from DACA to travel bans and family separation.”
According to the New York Times, Bragg “repeatedly brought up his many lawsuits against Mr. Trump and his administration” during his campaign. The article states: “Mr. Bragg, at a Democratic candidate forum in December, cited that lawsuit as one reason he was qualified to oversee the district attorney’s Trump investigation. ‘I have investigated Trump and his children and held them accountable for their misconduct with the Trump Foundation […] It is a fact that I have sued Trump more than a hundred times […] I can’t change that fact, nor would I. That was important work.’”
BRAGG IS A PROGRESSIVE ACTIVIST
Bragg has donated to Democrat candidates, including Barack Obama and Raphael Warnock.
Bragg issued a progressive manifesto on his first day in office directing prosecutors to not seek bail or jail time for criminals, to treat armed robbery as a misdemeanor, ignore retail thefts, to not prosecute people for resisting arrest, and to deny felony charges in several violent attacks.
NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell blasted Bragg’s soft-on-crime policies.
65 assistant district attorneys left Bragg’s office in the first half of 2022 after his progressive reforms to the state criminal justice system.
239 police officers resigned from the NYPD in January and February of 2023. 1,400 cops are projected to resign this year.
BRAGG IS DESTROYING MANHATTAN, WHERE CRIME IS RAMPANT
Crime increased 22 percent during Bragg’s first year in office.
Alvin Bragg in his first year in office downgraded more than half of all felonies to misdemeanors.
The latest crime statistics for NYC show that the following are up from two years ago:
- Rape +18.3 percent
- Robbery +41.7 percent
- Felony Assault +32.6 percent
- Burglary +21.4 percent
- Petit Larceny +40.9 percent
- Grand Larceny +57.6 percent
- Grand Larceny Auto +101.7 percent
- Transit Crime +53.9 percent
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