Facebook Post by 'Professional' Troll Could Complicate Donald Trump's Hush Money Conviction — Here's Why

By Jace Dela Cruz

Jun 08, 2024 04:58 AM EDT

A Facebook comment by a self-described "professional" troll has the potential to complicate former President Donald Trump's recent hush money trial conviction. 

Donald Trump Participates In A Turning Point Town Hall In Phoenix, Arizona
PHOENIX, ARIZONA - JUNE 06: Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a Turning Point PAC town hall at Dream City Church on June 06, 2024 in Phoenix, Arizona.
(Photo : Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

'Professional' Troll Comments on Facebook About Donald Trump Conviction

According to Business Insider, the Facebook user named "Michael Anderson" claimed that his cousin, a juror in Donald Trump's criminal case, said "they're going to convict him tomorrow."

Anderson wrote the comment on a post on the Facebook page of the New York State Unified Court System a day before the jury made Trump the first-ever former US president to become a convicted felony.

In his comment, Anderson also expressed gratitude to the "New York courts." In a letter on Friday, New York Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan, who presided over the trial, informed the prosecutors and Trump's lawyers about the comment to "bring to your attention."

Al Baker, a New York State Unified Court System spokesperson, told Business Insider that the court informed the parties about the online content since this was the "appropriate" thing to do.

The timing and nature of the comment had led to concerns about its authenticity and possible implications. Despite Anderson's reputation for trolling, the situation has raised questions about potential external influences on the jury.

READ NEXT: Republican Mega Donors Rallied Behind Donald Trump After Guilty Verdict in Hush Money Trial, Pledge Millions to Support His Reelection Bid 

'Professional' Troll Post Could Complicate Hush Money Trial Conviction of Donald Trump

Michael Anderson's Facebook profile, which features provocative content, portrays himself as a "professional s**t poster," reinforcing doubts about the credibility of his claims. However, this incident highlights the challenges that social media can pose to legal processes.

Former federal prosecutor Neama Rahmani told BI that the social media post could raise questions about whether outside influences are reaching jury deliberations, which the defense sometimes uses as grounds to appeal for a new trial.

However, she said the defense would need to show that an outside influence really swayed the jury to make a decision that may have been different without exposure to it.

"A stray comment on social media is not enough for a new trial... But if the defense can get a declaration from a juror that they discussed the case with family members, then Judge Merchan would hold an evidentiary hearing to examine the juror to determine whether the improper influence and prejudice took place," Rahmani told BI.

Donald Trump is expected to file an appeal after his July sentencing.

READ MORE: Trump Media and Technology Group, Truth Social's Parent Company, Lost Over $300 Million, First Earning Report Reveals

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