NEW YORK — A New York grand jury has voted to indict former President Donald Trump after investigating payments he made on his behalf during his 2016 presidential campaign, sources told ABC News.

A grand jury is investigating Trump’s involvement in paying porn star Stormy Daniels $130,000 in 2016 to prevent her from publishing information about a sexual encounter she had with the Republican years earlier.

Trump told ABC News by phone that the accusation was “an attack on our country.”

He called it “political persecution,” adding that “they are trying to influence the election.”

In a statement on Thursday, Trump’s lawyers said: “He did not commit any crime. We will vigorously fight this political persecution in court.”

All New York City police officers were ordered to report at 7 a.m. in uniform for deployment across the city, police officials told ABC News. That order followed Trump’s impeachment.

“At this time, there are no public statements or documents from DA Bragg, but the mayor is in constant contact with Commissioner Sewell on all public safety issues affecting the city,” said a spokesman for New York City Mayor Eric Adams. “The NYPD continues to monitor all activity and there are no credible threats to the city at this time. The NYPD is always ready to respond to on-site events and keep New Yorkers safe.”

Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, said in a statement: “I take solace in confirming the adage that no one is above the law; even a former president.”

“Today’s indictment is not the end of this chapter, it’s just the beginning,” Cohen said. “Accountability matters and I stand by my testimony and the evidence I presented [the district attorney’s office].”

The grand jury is hearing from witnesses, including Cohen, who says he arranged payments in 2016 to two women to keep them quiet about sexual contact they had with Trump a decade earlier.

Daniels’ attorney, Clark Brewster, issued a statement about the indictment saying, “The indictment of Donald Trump is nothing to be happy about. The hard work and conscientiousness of grand jurors must be respected. Now let truth and justice prevail. No one is above the law.”

Trump has denied the meetings and says he did nothing wrong, calling the investigation a “witch hunt” by Democratic prosecutors bent on sabotaging the Republican’s 2024 presidential campaign.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office was investigating whether state law was violated in connection with the payments or how the Trump campaign compensated Cohen for his work to silence the women’s allegations.

Daniels and at least two former Trump aides — former political adviser Kellyanne Conway and former press secretary Hope Hicks — are among the witnesses who have met with prosecutors in recent weeks.

Cohen said that at Trump’s direction, he arranged payments totaling $280,000 to Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougall. According to Cohen, the payments were to buy their silence about Trump, who was then in the midst of his first presidential campaign.

In this May 11, 2022, file photo, Stormy Daniels attends the premiere in Los Angeles.

Philip Faraon/Getty Images, FILE

Cohen and federal prosecutors said the company paid him $420,000 to offset a $130,000 payment to Daniels and to cover bonuses and other alleged expenses. The Company classified these internal payments as litigation expenses.

The $150,000 payment to McDougal was made by the then-publisher of the supermarket tabloid, the National Enquirer, which prevented her story from being published.

Federal prosecutors agreed not to prosecute the Enquirer’s corporate parent company in exchange for its cooperation in the campaign finance investigation that led to the indictment of Cohen in 2018. Prosecutors said the payments to Daniels and McDougal constituted impermissible, unregistered gifts to Trump’s campaign efforts.

Cohen pleaded guilty, served time in prison and had his license revoked. Federal prosecutors have never charged Trump with any crime.

The Democratic National Committee said in a statement Thursday, “Regardless of what happens in the upcoming Trump impeachment trial, it is clear that the Republican Party remains under the control of Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans.”

The DNC vowed, “We will continue to hold Trump and all Republican candidates accountable for MAGA’s extreme agenda, which includes banning abortion, cutting Social Security and Medicare, and undermining free and fair elections.”

Rona McDaniel, chairwoman of the Republican National Committee, called the indictment “a flagrant abuse of power by the prosecutor’s office for political revenge.”

“When our justice system becomes a political tool, it puts us all at risk,” she tweeted.

This is a developing story. Please check back for new updates.

ABC News and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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