Former President Donald Trump’s counsel, Joe Tacopina, said he doesn’t “know what to expect” when Trump is tried in New York City on accusations filed by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office.
“I’ve done a million arrangements in that courthouse with celebrities and whatnot,” Tacopina, who has handled a number of high-profile people, said in an ABC News interview on Sunday. “The Secret Service is involved.” I hear the courtroom will be closed for the afternoon. I’m just not sure what to anticipate.”
“What I hope is that we get in and out of there as quickly as possible,” he continued. “
As a lawyer, I want this to go as smoothly and quickly as possible so that we can begin this fight to put justice back on track to the degree we’ve had because, as I’ve said, once the rule of law falls in this country or is stretched so far to try and get a political opponent, it’s often difficult to get that rule of law back to its original shape.”
A Manhattan grand jury decided late last week to arrest Trump on unspecified counts.
The district attorney said in a statement that officials are working with Trump’s legal team on the hearing, though it’s unclear when that will happen.
“We contacted Mr. Trump’s attorney this evening to coordinate his surrender to the Manhattan D.A.’s Office for arraignment on a Supreme Court indictment, which remains under seal,” a Manhattan District counsel’s Office spokeswoman said in a March 30 statement. “When the arraignment date is set, guidance will be provided.”
Bragg has been examining Trump for payments made to adult film star Stormy Daniels in 2016, as well as whether those payments were misclassified.
In 2019, then-Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance launched an inquiry into Trump for possible bank, tax, and insurance theft, but it was later abandoned.
Tacopina claimed on Sunday that the accusations against Trump are politically driven and that Bragg “had to cobble some misdemeanors together to show that it was done with intent to cover up another crime.”
He also claimed that the Federal Election Commission (FEC) and the U.S. The Southern District of New York Attorney’s Office stated that it “did not occur.”
“I won’t be surprised by what’s in this indictment,” Tacopina said. “Of course, I’m going to be interested. But we do know that the charges center around his contact with Stormy Daniels’ payment deal.”
‘Preparing for a Battle’
Tacopina also divulged more information about Trump’s mentality ahead of his trial in the conversation, saying that “everything is on the table” in terms of his future plans.
“He’s preparing for a fight.” “You know, we obviously believe this is political persecution, and I think people on both sides of the aisle believe that,” he said. “It’s a total abuse of power.”
He’s a strong man… and he’s going to be primed for this battle. We’re prepared for this battle. And I’m looking forward to advancing this situation as fast as feasible in order to exonerate him.”
Tacopina declined to say whether Trump will attempt to shift his sentencing to Republican-leaning Staten Island. According to reports citing unnamed sources, Trump would do so.
“I mean, there’s been no discussion of it at all.” We haven’t seen – as you mentioned earlier, we haven’t seen the charge,” he responded. “It’s far [too] early to be concerned about venue changes until we see the indictment and deal with the legal issues.”
And there’s – before you make moves like changing the location, you have to do some study. We’re way [too] early to be choosing what moves to submit or not file, and we do need to see the charge and get to work. Look, this is just the beginning.”