Judge who issued blistering ruling that Trump’s companies engaged in ‘fraud’ says there are 188 witnesses lined up for Monday’s civil trial as Trump lawyer tries to find out if former president must SELL prized assets
Judge Arthur Engoron, who issued a stunning summary judgment ruling that Donald Trump and his company were guilty of fraud, is preparing for a major civil trial next week to determine financial penalties, with 188 witnesses lined up.
He provided the information as Trump’s legal team — including a top lawyer who was fined $7,500 — pushed to find out whether Trump was expected to liquidate valuable holdings such as Trump Tower and 40 Wall Street.
“Is it the court’s position that those assets will now be sold or will be managed solely under the direction of the (recipient)?” asked Trump lawyer Christopher Kise, a multi-million dollar attorney who also represents him in the Florida classified documents case.
This happened after the judge granted summary judgment pronunciation finding fraud, ruling that the various New York State corporate certificates have been canceled, and directing the parties to seek trustees to manage “the dissolution” of the canceled corporations.
A New York judge ruled in summary proceedings that former President Trump and his company were guilty of fraud over a period of years
But in court Wednesday, the judge wasn’t quite ready to answer the question of whether the assets would be sold.
“I’m not prepared to make a statement right now, but we’ll bring that up in different contexts, I’m sure,” Engoron said.
Kise called the judge’s ruling ‘completely disconnected from the facts and applicable law.’
The judge, who also called Kise “extremely intelligent,” said during a pre-trial hearing that the case would continue as planned on Monday.
State trooper Letitia James is suing Trump and his companies for $250 million, and the penalty phase will determine how much he must pay. Under a receivership model, Trump would still own property but lose operational control over it.
Kise urged the judge for clarity after his client made a lengthy, single-spaced statement calling it a “radical attack on me, my family” and supporters.
Trump also called James “corrupt,” said the U.S. was becoming “a communist country” and that his “civil rights have been taken away.”
‘And don’t take this the wrong way, but what does this process look like according to the court? What are the problems?’ Kise asked during the hearing. “We certainly have our thoughts, we haven’t spoken to the attorney general yet.”
“I’m just wondering what’s the point?” Kise said.
Engoron ruled that the fraud took place over a period of years, after prosecutors in James’ office said the Trump Organization overestimated valuations by more than $2 billion.
Trump has repeatedly attacked Letitia James, New York’s secretary of state, accusing her of bias against him
Eric Trump, ex-director of the Trump Organization, fired off a series of angry tweets pushing back on the ruling, which also affects any entity controlled or owned by his father, him and Donald Trump Jr.
“As absurd as this case is, Judge Engoron knows that I have done absolutely nothing wrong. Any impartial judge who looked at the facts and extensive testimony would never have allowed my name to be dragged through the mud. Frankly, it’s cruel,” he wrote on X, the former Twitter site, on Wednesday.
That came after a post on Tuesday in which he wrote: “While everyone can see this case is egregious, the only thing worse than weaponizing the justice system against a political opponent is unfairly going after their family. Both the attorney general and the judge know that I have absolutely NOTHING to do with this case.”
Online critics noted that Eric Trump reportedly invoked the Fifth Amendment 500 times when he was impeached in the case.
Eric Trump, Donald Trump Jr. and CEO Allen Weiselberg, who was also named in the ruling, ran the company while Trump was in the White House.
He also overturned an assessment cited in the ruling that Mar-a-Lago, the private Florida club where his father lives, was worth $18 million.
It quotes the West Palm Beach Assessor’s estimate that the property was worth between $18 million and $28 million between 2011 and 2021, although some experts say it is worth much more.
Engeron cited discrepancies calculated by James’ office between what the company claimed and what assets are worth.
“A discrepancy of this magnitude, where a real estate developer has estimated his own living space for decades, can only be considered fraud,” he said – pointing to Trump’s estimates of his 30,000-square-foot Trump Tower penthouse, as he was actually 30,000 square meters in size. there were 11,000.