Federal Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel ruled yesterday that the Donald Trump fraud case will proceed, as reported by the New York Times. However, that videotaped footage of the billionaire presidential candidate being deposed in late 2015 and early 2016 will not be released.
The newspaper stated that southern California U.S. District Court Judge Curiel had concluded “that the aggrieved former students had raised a genuine question about whether Mr. Trump had ‘knowingly participated in a scheme to defraud.'”
Curiel’s written statement was also quoted by Newsy of asking whether or not Trump University engaged in “false advertising.” Questions have been raised as to Trump’s level of involvement with the school. While Trump appears to be attempting to distance himself from the university, at the time it operated, advertising was reported to claim that Trump had “integral involvement” and that he personally selected the school’s instructors.
The New York Times asks whether Trump’s level of involvement, or lack thereof, was “false or misleading” to students who paid significant amounts of money for what they believed was a real estate business education specially designed by Donald J. Trump.
Trump has repeatedly denied the allegations of fraud levied against him and argued that the claims against Trump University come from a small group of disgruntled students and that overall, the company’s interaction with students led them to believe that the vast majority were satisfied with the education they received from courses carrying tuition upwards of $35,000.
Currently, three Trump fraud lawsuits dealing with the Republican presidential nominee’s former university are reported to exist: two in California and one in New York.
In July, the Inquisitr reported on a similar ruling by Judge Curiel, striking down one of the several motions on the part of Trump’s legal team to have the fraud lawsuits dismissed.
Donald Trump has publicly lambasted the Indiana-born federal judge on the basis of his family’s Mexican ancestry and whether or not he would be able to impartially judge the fraud cases. The New York Times described Trump’s political rivals turning “the case against him.”
Video footage of Trump being deposed in December and January is said to exist, but Judge Curiel has refused to have it released on the grounds that a transcript of the depositions provides a “substantially accurate” understanding of the proceedings and that releasing the tapes could contribute to a “media frenzy.”
Lawyers representing Trump have argued that footage from the Trump fraud disposition could be utilized in attack ads by Hillary Clinton or other political rivals and that their release could create such a large amount of attention that it would “bias” any potential jurors.
“I have a judge who is a hater of Donald Trump,” Trump stated to a group of rally attendees in San Diego, “He’s a hater. His name is Gonzalo Curiel.”
In March, Claire Rosenzweig of the Metro New York Better Business Bureau stated that while Trump University was operating, its score with the consumer watchdog fell to a D-. After the school closed and “older complaints” began to expire, the Trump University ranking eventually rose to A+. Trump University is reported to have had “no rating” since September of 2015.
In March, at a Republican debate, Trump claimed that Trump University was currently rated by the BBB with an A. Trump was also reported to have claimed to have received a communication from the BBB at the debate that evening.
“The Better Business Bureau just sent it,” Trump was quoted by the Huffington Post of telling Fox News’ Bret Baier. “This just came in, we just got it.”
The BBB has stated that no communication was sent to Donald Trump the night the Republican debate was held, March 3. The organization has also stated that the document presented by Trump to Baier “did not come from BBB that night.”
Following the Democratic National Convention, Hillary Clinton received a boost in poll numbers, currently beating Trump with 42.2 percent of voter support compared with 37.8 percent for the Republican, as reported by Real Clear Politics. Americans will be closely observing the statements coming from Judge Curiel and the candidate himself about the Trump fraud cases over the coming weeks, with the election drawing so near and a presidential candidate facing trials for such serious matters.
[Photo by Bebeto Matthews/File/AP Images]