Spousal privilege: Can Melania be forced to testify against Donald Trump?


New Delhi: As former President Donald Trump'S criminal cases progress, the question is whether the former first lady melania trump will be called bear witness has attracted significant attention. The lawsuit, which focuses on allegations that Trump falsified business records related to hush money payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels, has Melania listed among potential witnesses.
The case involves a $130,000 payment to Daniels by Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen to prevent her from disclosing his alleged affair with Trump before the 2016 presidential election. Despite the high-profile nature of the trial and the extensive witness list, which also includes Trump's three adult children—Donald Jr., Ivanka and Eric—it is uncertain whether Melania will take the stand.
Legal experts have noted that while it is possible for prosecutors to subpoena Melania, the chances of her testifying are slim. Former federal prosecutor Nima Rahmani told Newsweek, “If Melania is subpoenaed by the prosecution, she would have to testify unless she could claim some kind of privilege.” The most relevant privilege here would be spousal privilegeWhich protects confidential communications between husband and wife during marriage.
Michael McAuliffe, another former federal prosecutor, stressed that Melania's direct involvement in the charges was negligible, as she was not connected to the underlying events with Daniels. “In fact, she is the alleged victim in the illicit sexual relationship of the story,” he said, suggesting that forcing her to testify could potentially play into Trump's narrative that the trial is more about sensationalism than legal accountability.
The trial in Manhattan also includes allegations related to payments to former Playboy model Karen McDougal, but the judge has limited discussion of the circumstances of those payments. Legal experts argue that forcing Melania to testify could unnecessarily sensationalize the proceedings.
Other high-profile figures listed as potential witnesses include Jared Kushner, Kellyanne Conway, Rudy Giuliani and several former aides and campaign officials, reflecting the broad scope of the trial and its potential ramifications for Trump.
As jury selection continues, with seven jurors already selected and efforts underway to complete the panel, the legal community and the public are anxiously watching to see how the case unfolds and whether Melania Trump will actually be convicted. Will be called to testify against her husband.
(with inputs from agencies)

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