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Trump’s confession? Legal experts say his post-court rant could be a “big issue” going forward

As the second day of Donald Trump’s criminal trial wrapped up Tuesday, the former president told reporters outside the courthouse that he was innocent of charges that he falsified business records to cover-up his payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels. In doing so, Trump may have accidentally confessed to his guilt by pinning the crime directly to himself.

“I was paying a lawyer and marked it down as a legal expense. Some accountant, I didn’t know, marked it down as a legal expense. That’s exactly what it was, and you get indicted over that?” Trump said. “I should be in Pennsylvania and Florida, in many other states. North Carolina, Georgia, campaigning.”

Law professor Jessica Roth told CNN’s Anderson Cooper that if the comments were placed before the jury, Trump may come to regret his unintentional candor. “When he started to say, ‘I marked it down as legal expenses,’ my ears perked up because it’s been a little bit unclear exactly how the state is going to prove that Trump falsified the records because many of these entries may have been made by the accountants for the Trump Organization,” she said.

Legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin concurred, saying that the comments are “gonna be a big issue in the case.”

“How is the government gonna prove that Trump knew and initiated or at least supported the idea that these payoffs were recorded as legal fees?” he continued, “He said, ‘Mark them down.’ Now, as Jessica said, he sort of caught himself. But, you know, that that video could be played before the jury, no question.”

Trump faces 34 felony counts leveled by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, who accuses the Republican candidate of trying to unlawfully influence the 2016 election with his clandestine payments to Daniels, who claims she had an affair with the former president. Trump’s former fixer, Michael Cohen, was convicted for his role in the scheme and served a year in prison.

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