Judge Rejects Trump’s Request for Relief From $83.3 Million Defamation Award

The federal judge who presided over a defamation lawsuit in New York that awarded a longstanding magazine columnist of Donald Trump $83.3 million declined to release the former president from the financial burden of the verdict on Thursday. In a written ruling, Judge Lewis A. Kaplan informed Trump’s legal representative that he would not postpone the dates for posting a bond that would guarantee the award to 80-year-old writer E. Jean Carroll, should the judgment survive appeals. The judge stated that the Republican front-runner for president is suffering financial injury as a result of his tardiness in responding to the late-January ruling in the defamation lawsuit pertaining to remarks he made about Carroll in his capacity as president in 2019.

 

Trump at the time said she was fabricating stories about his alleged rape of her in the spring of 1996 in the changing room of an upscale Manhattan department store. Carroll received $5 million in damages last May from a jury in a trial that Trump did not attend, concluding that although he had sexually assaulted her, he had not violated the definition of rape as set forth by New York state law. It was also determined that in words made in October 2022, he had defamed her. The judge, who had decided that the jury had to accept the May verdict and was merely to determine how much in damages, if any, Carroll was owed for Trump’s 2019 utterances, severely limited Trump’s ability to testify during the trial in January.

 

Trump’s attorneys have contested the ruling, arguing that there is a “strong probability” that the $65 million punitive order will be lowered or erased throughout the appeals process. Following the January ruling, a New York state court judge has mandated that Trump and his businesses pay $355 million in penalties for a multi-year plan to deceive banks and other parties by providing false financial statements that exaggerated his wealth. He owes the state around $454 million, plus interest. Kaplan mentioned in his ruling on Thursday that Trump’s attorneys had to wait a full 25 days to request a postponement of the bond’s due date. On Monday, the verdict is rendered final.

 

 

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