Trump criminal trial moves forward quickly: 12 jurors selected

The selection process was hampered by the number of people excused due to their inability to be fair or impartial.

On Thursday, after an extensive selection process, the court finally selected the 12 jurors and one alternate for the criminal trial in the alleged "hush money" case against former President Donald Trump.

The selection process occupied the third day of the court proceedings against Trump, with dozens of people being excused almost immediately after admitting they could not be fair or impartial during the trial.

"We have our jury," Judge Juan Merchán announced after all members were selected.

By Tuesday, seven Manhattan resident jurors had already been selected. However, two of them were dismissed.

Juror number four, selected and sworn in on Tuesday, was dismissed Thursday after it was revealed that the man had previously been arrested in Westchester, New York, for tearing down political advertisements in the city.

This incident was confirmed by Manhattan District Attorney's Office prosecutor Alvin Bragg and backed up by U.S. Attorney Joshua Steinglass, who noted that the torn-down signs were specifically conservative and politically oriented, raising additional concerns about his impartiality in the case.

The controversy with this juror did not end there. His wife was found to have been involved in a "corruption inquiry."

Another juror who had been chosen Tuesday was also dismissed Thursday. The nurse, a resident of Manhattan's Upper East Side, expressed doubts about her ability to be impartial in the trial, pointing to outside influences. She also expressed concern about the possible disclosure of aspects of her identity.

Judge Merchán excused both jurors and issued a warning to the press regarding coverage of the case, urging them to exercise common sense and refrain from divulging details that could compromise the jurors' safety.

This selection process is crucial, as this group of people will be making key decisions on the fate of former President Trump. The complexity of the process and the polarizing nature of the trial underscore the importance of ensuring that the selected jury can perform its duty in a fair and impartial manner.

With all 12 jurors selected and only five alternates selected, the hush money trial against Trump is expected to enter a new phase, with arguments and evidence being the main focus.

This judicial process facing the former president is related to the alleged hush payments made to porn actress Stormy Daniels during his presidential campaign in 2016.

Last year, Manhattan U.S. Attorney Alvin Bragg filed charges against Trump for allegedly falsifying business records related to these payments to secure Daniels' silence. A total of 34 charges have been issued against him in connection with this matter.

Despite the allegations, Trump has steadfastly maintained his innocence, calling the investigation against him a "witch hunt" driven by political motivations.