After Attacks on Judge's Daughter, Trump's Gag Order Expanded

Relatives of judge, DA now included
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 2, 2024 12:00 AM CDT
After Attacks on Judge's Daughter, Trump's Gag Order Expanded
Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump attends a campaign rally in Waterford Township, Mich., Feb. 17, 2024.   (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File)

Donald Trump's gag order was expanded Monday night after the former president went after the daughter of the judge in his hush money case. Trump, who has also verbally attacked the judge himself, had previously been barred from talking about witnesses, prosecutors, court staff, and jurors in the case (as well as their relatives). State Judge Juan Merchan has now added his own family members and those of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg to that list, NBC News reports. Trump had, on his Truth Social network, falsely claimed Merchan's daughter "makes money by working to 'Get Trump'" and had posted a photo showing him behind bars, the AP reports.

"This pattern of attacking family members of presiding jurists and attorneys assigned to his cases serves no legitimate purpose," Merchan wrote. "It merely injects fear in those assigned or called to participate in the proceedings that not only they, but their family members as well, are 'fair game,' for Defendant's vitriol." The trial starts in less than two weeks, and Merchan argued Trump's actions could "interfere with the fair administration of justice." If Trump violates the gag order, he could be fined, held in contempt of court, or jailed. His lawyers have argued that Trump's comments are protected political campaign speech. They had no immediate comment on the gag order's expansion. (More Donald Trump stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.