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Donald Trump said in a social media post that he expects to be arrested on Tuesday as a New York prosecutor pursues charges in a case examining secret payments to women who allegedly had sex with the former president.
In a post on his Truth social network early Saturday, Trump said that "illegal leaks" from the Manhattan district attorney's office indicated that "the far-right Republican candidate and former president of the United States of America will be arrested on Tuesday next week." Messages left Saturday with the district attorney's office were not immediately returned. Representatives for Trump did not immediately respond to calls for comment.
Trump did not provide any details on social media about how he knew about the pending arrest. In his posts, he repeated his lies that the 2020 presidential election, which he lost to Democrat Joe Biden, was stolen, and urged his followers to "Protest, take back our nation!" The language evoked a message from the then-president that preceded the riots at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.
Law enforcement officers in New York were making security preparations for the possibility that Trump could be indicted. There has been no public announcement of any timeframe for the grand jury's secret work in the case, including a possible vote on whether to indict the former president.
Trump's post echoes one from last summer when he broke the news on Truth Socia that the FBI was searching his home as part of an investigation into possible mishandling of classified documents.
A Manhattan grand jury heard witnesses, including former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen, who said he orchestrated payments to two women in 2016 to keep them quiet about sexual encounters they claimed they had with Trump a decade earlier. Trump denies the meetings took place, says he did nothing wrong and has called the investigation a "witch hunt" by a Democratic prosecutor seeking to sabotage the 2024 Republican presidential campaign.
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg's office is apparently looking into whether any state laws were violated in connection with the payments or how the Trump company compensated Cohen for his work to silence the women's allegations. Daniels and at least two former Trump aides, former political adviser Kellyanne Conway and former spokeswoman Hope Hicks, are among the witnesses who have met with prosecutors in recent weeks.
Cohen said he arranged payments totalling $280,000 to porn star Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal at Trump's direction. According to Cohen, the payments were intended to buy silence about Trump, who was then at the center of his first presidential campaign.