Judge Dismisses Trump’s Plea for Mistrial in New York Fraud Litigation

by Andrew Wright
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Trump mistrial ruling

Justice Arthur Engoron, presiding over Donald Trump’s civil fraud lawsuit, has dismissed the former president’s request for a mistrial. This decision came on Friday, as Trump’s legal team alleged that the trial was tainted with political prejudice.

The defense claimed that Justice Engoron’s actions had significantly compromised Trump’s right to an impartial trial. They pointed to his decisions against Trump, the influential role of his chief law clerk in the courtroom, the clerk’s political contributions, and Engoron’s supposed impropriety in sharing news about the case in an alumni newsletter from his high school.

However, Engoron refuted these allegations as baseless in his statement on Friday. He emphasized that his chief law clerk plays no role in making rulings or issuing orders, reiterating that these responsibilities fall solely on him. Engoron affirmed his commitment to conducting the trial fairly, impartially, and professionally, as he has been doing for over three years.

Trump’s attorney, Alina Habba, criticized the judge for not acknowledging what she perceives as his failure to maintain impartiality in the case. Despite this setback, she vowed to continue advocating for a fair trial for their clients.

This ruling follows a recent decision by an appeals judge to temporarily suspend a gag order Engoron had placed on the trial participants and attorneys. The order primarily targeted remarks about court staffers, especially chief law clerk Allison Greenfield, who has faced intense scrutiny during the trial.

The state Attorney General’s office, which initiated the civil suit, has been contacted for comment. The lawsuit accuses Trump, his company, and key executives of inflating his net worth by billions in financial statements used for loans and business transactions.

The trial aims to resolve allegations of conspiracy, insurance fraud, and falsification of business records. Justice Engoron will deliver the verdict, as the case does not involve a jury. Attorney General James seeks over $300 million in penalties and aims to prohibit Trump from business activities in New York. Additionally, an appeals court has currently paused Engoron’s pre-trial order to appoint a receiver for some of Trump’s properties.

Trump and his co-defendants, including sons Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, deny any misconduct. Trump, a leading candidate for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, portrays the trial as politically motivated, orchestrated by Democrats James and Engoron.

The defense also criticized Greenfield, alleging her involvement in the trial reflects a pro-Attorney General and anti-Trump bias. They argued that her political donations and her run for a civil court judgeship in Manhattan last year violated state ethics rules. However, Engoron defended his clerk, stating her contributions were legal and within ethical boundaries.

Last week, Engoron rejected a motion for a directed verdict to conclude the trial, proposed by the defense.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Trump mistrial ruling

What was the outcome of Donald Trump’s request for a mistrial in his New York civil fraud case?

Justice Arthur Engoron denied Donald Trump’s request for a mistrial in his civil fraud case, dismissing allegations from Trump’s legal team that the trial was compromised by political bias.

What were the main reasons cited by Trump’s lawyers for requesting a mistrial?

Trump’s lawyers argued that the trial was biased due to Justice Engoron’s rulings against Trump, the role of his chief law clerk in court, the clerk’s political donations, and Engoron’s sharing of articles about the case in an alumni newsletter.

What was Justice Engoron’s response to the allegations of bias and impropriety?

Justice Engoron refuted the allegations of bias and impropriety, emphasizing that he alone makes rulings and issues orders, and that his chief law clerk does not influence these decisions. He also defended his impartiality in presiding over the case.

What was the response of Trump’s lawyer, Alina Habba, to the ruling?

Trump’s lawyer, Alina Habba, expressed disappointment, accusing the judge of failing to maintain impartiality and vowing to continue fighting for a fair trial.

What are the charges in the civil fraud case against Donald Trump?

The lawsuit alleges that Trump, his company, and top executives inflated his wealth in financial statements to secure loans and make deals, with charges including fraud, conspiracy, insurance fraud, and falsifying business records.

What is the significance of the chief law clerk, Allison Greenfield, in the trial?

Allison Greenfield, the chief law clerk, has been under scrutiny for her role in the courtroom and her political contributions, with the defense criticizing her involvement as biased. However, Engoron defended her actions as legal and ethical.

More about Trump mistrial ruling

  • Civil Fraud Case Against Trump
  • Judge Denies Trump Mistrial Request
  • Allegations of Bias in Trump Trial
  • Trump Legal Team’s Response
  • Charges in Trump’s New York Fraud Case
  • Role of Chief Law Clerk in Trump Case

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