An attorney for Donald Trump says the former president would not refuse to surrender to authorities if he is indicted in the Manhattan district attorney’s probe into a hush-money deal from his 2016 presidential run.
“There won’t be a standoff at Mar-a-Lago with Secret Service and the Manhattan DA’s office,” Joe Tacopina told The New York Daily News.
Tacopina said Trump, whom he described as a survivor, would find a way to use any charges filed against him to help him politically in the end.
“Most people would collapse under the weight of this,” he said. “He seems to turn everything into a positive and everything into a boost for his campaign, so I’m sure this will just join that long list of things that people think no one could overcome, but he will.”
Tacopina’s comments comes as Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg appears to be close to making a decision about whether to charge Trump in his investigation into the hush-money payment that was made to adult-film star Stormy Daniels for her to stay quiet ahead of the 2016 presidential election about an affair she says she and Trump had.
Former Trump attorney Michael Cohen, who testified before the grand jury in the probe earlier this week, pleaded guilty in 2018 to multiple charges including a campaign finance violation for a $130,000 payment he made to Daniels. Cohen, who served more than a year in prison, has said he made the payment at Trump’s direction.
Daniels met with Manhattan prosecutors leading the investigation on Wednesday.
Trump has admitted to reimbursing Cohen for the payment but says it was not related to his campaign funds. The Trump Organization declared the payment reimbursing Cohen to be a legal expense.
Trump campaign spokesperson Steven Cheung blasted Bragg in a statement on Thursday, asserting that Trump is “completely innocent.” He alleged that the probe was politically motivated and would backfire “massively” on Democrats.
Trump was invited to appear before the grand jury himself, another sign of an impending decision on whether charges will be filed, but he declined to testify.