Hush money payments: Trump jittery, raises alarm over ‘planned arrest’

Former American president, Donald Trump has posted on his platform Truth Social that he expects to be arrested on Tuesday in the criminal case in New York involving hush money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels.

Earlier this year the former US president called for protests by his supporters if he was indicted in any of the numerous criminal investigations in New York, Georgia and by federal authorities into various allegations involving illegal campaign payments, election interference, efforts to overturn his 2020 presidential election loss and keeping top secret documents at home after leaving office. On Saturday he posted: “Protest, take our nation back!”

In New York, Manhattan district attorney Alvin Bragg’s team is investigating the hush money case amid rising expectations that Trump could be indicted as early as next week.

But without any official confirmation, Trump, who is running for the Republican nomination in the 2024 presidential election, posted a message, referring to himself in the third person, saying: “The far and away leading Republican candidate and former president of the United States of America will be arrested on Tuesday of next week.”

Law enforcement officials in New York have been making security preparations for the possibility that Trump could be indicted.

There has been no public announcement of any timeframe or any indictment.

A spokesperson and a lawyer for Trump said later on Saturday that his post was based on media reports rather than any actual update from, or communication with, prosecutors. Trump’s post cited “illegal leaks from a corrupt and highly political Manhattan district attorney’s office”.

The district attorney’s office declined to comment.

In his postings, he repeated his lies that the 2020 presidential election that he lost to Joe Biden was “stolen” because of voter fraud, and he urged his followers to protest.

That evoked the message from the then president that preceded the insurrection by extremist supporters at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, that ultimately failed to thwart the certification of Biden’s victory.

Also on Saturday, Trump sent out a fundraising email that said the “Manhattan DA could be close to charging Trump” and later posted again slamming the current US government and urging protests.

It emerged in January that Bragg had made the surprise move to impanel a grand jury to hear evidence in the Daniels case, which had previously faded from the spotlight amid turmoil among prosecutors about a wider investigation into Trump’s business practices.