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Date of first criminal process in US history against former president revealed

Date of first criminal process in US history against former president revealed Former President of the US Donald Trump (photo: Getty Images)

The criminal case against former US President Donald Trump for allegedly attempting to bribe porn actress Stormy Daniels to conceal information about their sexual relationship is set to begin with opening statements on Monday, according to CNN.

On Friday in New York, 12 jurors and six alternates were sworn in.

Earlier in the week, there were estimates that jury selection could last into the second week, but the judge found enough candidates willing to serve.

Trump, whose lawyers had continued to try to delay the court proceedings, complained about the speed of Judge Juan Merchan as he left the courtroom.

"The trial starts on Monday, which is long before a lot of people thought. The judge wants this to go as fast as possible. That’s for his reasons, not for my reasons," Trump said in the courthouse hallway.

The new jurors include a woman from Spain; a native New Yorker who is a martial arts enthusiast; a contract specialist; a woman who works at a sewing company; and a project manager at a construction company.

All 18 jurors will meet for the first time on Monday morning when the trial is set to begin.

Essence of the accusation

Prosecutors accuse Trump of, in 2014, through his lawyer Michael Cohen, attempting to bribe porn actress Stormy Daniels with $130,000 to prevent her from publicly disclosing her statements about her sexual relationship with Trump. The former president denies the fact of this meeting.

According to the indictment, the payments to the lawyer were falsely recorded as legal fees. Prosecutors allege that these funds are part of a scheme to conceal scandalous stories that, in Trump's opinion, could have worked against him in the 2016 election.

Trump acknowledged reimbursing the money to Cohen, stating that it was done to prevent Daniels from disclosing information about a possible encounter. However, he claims that this is not related to the election campaign.

If Trump is found guilty, he could face up to four years in prison.