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Trump trial: Judge Merchan mulls prosecution request to fine Trump $3,000 for attacking witnesses

This is Yahoo News' succinct update on the criminal and civil cases against former President Donald Trump. Here are the latest developments:

🚨 What happened today

On the first day of Trump's first criminal trial, prosecutors asked Judge Juan Merchan to fine Trump $3,000 for three social media posts attacking witnesses who will testify in the hush money case against him that they say violate a gag order put in place by the judge last month. Merchan said Monday that he will hear further arguments on the prosecution request on April 24.

📌 Tell me more

In recent social media posts, Trump attacked his former lawyer Michael Cohen and adult-film star Stormy Daniels, both of whom are expected to testify, calling them "sleazebags."

Prosecutors asked Merchan to sanction Trump $3,000 for social media posts they say violated the judge’s gag order that prevents Trump from making statements about the participation of prospective witnesses.

Trump’s lawyers argued that the former president was “responding to salacious, repeated attacks by these witnesses.”

Merchan responded to that point by saying, "I don't recall that there's an exception if he's being attacked."

The judge also made a series of rulings on what evidence prosecutors could present during the trial. They’ll be allowed to enter into the record a transcript of the famous “Access Hollywood” tape in which Trump boasts about being able to sexually assault women, but the video will not be shown.

Merchan gave instructions on the trial schedule, including that court will not be in session most Wednesdays.

Jury selection also began on Monday.

📖 Get caught up

⚖️ Trump's trials and legal cases

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