Judge In Hush Money Trial Raises Concerns Over Post From 'Cousin' Of Juror

By Bill Galluccio

June 8, 2024

Former President Donald Trump Attends Pre-Trial Hearing In New York Hush Money Case
Photo: Pool / Getty Images News / Getty Images

The judge who oversaw former President Donald Trump's hush money criminal trial raised some concerns about a Facebook post made during the trial in a brief letter to prosecutors and Trump's defense lawyers.

Judge Juan Merchan highlighted a post written on the New York State Unified Court Systems' public Facebook page from a person claiming to be a cousin of one of the jurors.

"My cousin is a juror and says Trump is getting convicted Thank you folks for all your hard work!!!!" the person wrote on May 29, one day before the jury convicted Trump of 34 counts of falsifying business records.

The post has since been removed.

According to Forbes, the post was made by Michael Anderson, a person who described himself as a "professional s**tposter."

Donald Trump reacted to the news on Truth Social, writing, "MISTRIAL!"

Even if the post is accurate, it may not be grounds for a mistrial. Attorney Neama Rahmani told Newsweek that "the burden for a new trial is high."

"Jury deliberations are sacred, and the defense usually can't use juror discussions as a basis for a new trial or to appeal, even if the jurors misunderstood the facts or the law," Rahmani explained.

"One exception, however, is if outside influences are brought into the jury deliberation room," he said. "That may be a basis for a new trial.

"A stray comment on social media is not enough for a new trial," Rahmani added.

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