‘A Manifest Injustice’: Legal Experts Respond To Verdict In Trump’s New York Fraud Case

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Several legal experts criticized a ruling ordering former President Donald Trump to pay $354 million in a civil fraud case Friday.

Democratic Attorney General James of New York sued Trump in September 2022, alleging he overstated the value of real estate holdings in order to obtain loans. In addition to the fine, Judge Arthur Engoron’s ruling prohibits Trump from being “an officer or director of any New York corporation or other legal entity in New York for a period of three years.” (RELATED: ‘It Ruins Their Case’: Attorney Reveals Why New York Judge Tried To Hush Trump During Testimony)

“This verdict is a manifest injustice – plain and simple. It is the culmination of a multi-year, politically fueled witch hunt that was designed to ‘take down Donald Trump,’ before Letitia James ever stepped foot into the Attorney General’s office,” Trump attorney Alina Habba posted on X. “Countless hours of testimony proved that there was no wrongdoing, no crime, and no victim.”

“Given the grave stakes, we trust that the Appellate Division will overturn this egregious verdict and end this relentless persecution against my clients,” Habba continued. “Let me make one thing perfectly clear: this is not just about Donald Trump – if this decision stands, it will serve as a signal to every single American that New York is no longer open for business.”

Engoron ruled on Sept. 26 that Trump was liable for fraud, ordering that several business licenses Trump held were to be rescinded. An appeals court paused the ruling Oct. 6.


“Even before the trial began—before any witness or any other evidence—Engoron decreed Trump (somehow) committed fraud,” Mike Davis, founder of the Article 3 Project, posted. “After paying back sophisticated Wall Street banks, in full, on time, with interest, as agreed. Then the partisan hack judge ordered the business death sentence.”

“This is unprecedented. New York has never brought a case like this ever in the history of New York that anyone can find, yet they go after Donald Trump when crime in New York is at an all-time high,” former Republican Attorney General Pam Bondi of Florida said on “Kudlow.” “Letitia James should be out there fighting crime, and instead she went after Donald Trump and his family.”

George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley also criticized the ruling. (RELATED: ‘She’s Asking For A Nuclear Option’: Jonathan Turley Reacts To ‘Breathtaking’ Demands From NY AG In Trump Case)

“The court has done everything short of ordering that Trump be thrown into a woodchipper,” Turley said during an appearance on “The Story.” “He’s imposed almost the maximum amount that James requested, he’s barring him from doing business in the city where he’s an iconic business figure, barring him from getting loans. The last part is particularly ironic.

“The banks not only said that they were not victims and did not complain about the alleged fraud, but they said that they wanted to do more business with Trump,” he continued. “They described him as a whale client. So this is all being done essentially in their name as victims even though no one lost any money.”


“None of us could find a case like this, and yet the first one, you have this fortune that is being demanded by the court to be turned over,” Turley said. “I think there’s real problems here. I think that this is going to have the same impact on some appellate judges.”

Real-estate experts told the Daily Caller News Foundation that Engoron’s ruling greatly undervalued Mar-a-Lago, the Florida estate owned by Trump, which some considered to be worth more than $250,000,000.

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