‘Red-Faced’ Donald Trump Lashes Out at Judge During $250M Fraud Trial Testimony
Within the first hour of Donald Trump's testimony, an ever-more irate Judge Arthur Engoron tried to persuade him to respond to questioning regarding his net worth and assets without resorting to politics and grand statements from the stand.
His responses are not only "nonresponsive," but also "repetitive," according to Judge Engoron, who warned that the former president's continuous rants could be used against him in a lawsuit that already puts his whole business empire in jeopardy. Turning his grievances toward the judge, Trump made gestures with his hands while fuming on the witness stand, The Independent reported.
“You ruled against me and you said I was a fraud,” Trump raged on, looking at the floor in front of him. “He called me a fraud, and he didn’t know anything about me,” Trump lashed out at the judge.
“Weaponization, we call it,” he said. Following two days of testimony from his sons Donald Jr. and Eric Trump, who both insisted they had nothing to do with the preparation of their father's financial condition statement, the alleged document that was given to the bank and used to inflate their net worth. This statement is at the heart of the $250 million suit New York Attorney General Letitia James has brought against The Trump Organization.
Donald Trump complained of unfair treatment in defiant and rambling testimony on the witness stand at the civil fraud trial about his New York business, prompting the judge at one point to threaten to cut his testimony short https://t.co/OEql88Fyoj pic.twitter.com/kIthi1nz8n— Reuters (@Reuters) November 6, 2023
“They were just something you would have for yourself if you were borrowing money,” Trump said of the documents. “They were not really documents that the banks paid much attention to. They just weren’t a very important element in the bank’s decision-making process. And we’ll explain that as the trial goes along. Crazy trial, as it goes along.” In his testimony, he also said that the attorney general's case was “the opposite” of those claims and that his exaggerated property values omitted an undisclosed “brand value.”
Trump blasted the attorney who was interrogating him and his other opponents in the Democratic Party, labeling them "haters." He also complained that Engoron "always rules against me," causing the judge to retort that the remark "isn't true," MSNBC reported. “This is a very unfair trial,” Trump said at one point. “And I hope the public is watching.”
With this testimony, Trump is making his first appearance in court since he left proceedings abruptly when his lawyers couldn't persuade the judge to rule in his favor right away and after the judge fined him twice for breaking a trial gag order related to his derogatory comments about the chief clerk.
The judge, whom Trump regularly attacks on his Truth Social, has already ruled in favor of a summary judgment holding him accountable for fraud. The attorney general is suing on six other counts, each of which includes conspiracy counts and counts of fabricating business papers. The outcome of the bench trial, in which the judge will preside over both the jury and the trial, will establish the extent of the attorney general's potential liability as well as the viability of each of the allegations.
REPORT: Donald Trump reportedly pulled out a piece of paper from his suit jacket in court, claiming it would clear him of all wrongdoing in the $250M fraud case.— Collin Rugg (@CollinRugg) November 7, 2023
Left-wing Judge Arthur Engoron refused to let him read it.
The paper in question reportedly was a disclaimer clause… pic.twitter.com/iIAZkoFdBK
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