Sunday, May 19, 2024

NY AG and Trump call each other ‘frivolous’ as former president demands delay in Trump Org business-fraud trial

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Donald Trump, again, wants a trial delayed.

Photo by Diane Bondareff/Invision/AP

In 26 days, Trump, his sons, and his real-estate empire are scheduled in a civil fraud trial in New York.
NY Attorney General Letitia James seeks to permanently banish Trump Org from the state.
In a new war of words, Trump is asking for a trial delay as each side calls the other “frivolous.”

Donald Trump’s legal team has answered New York’s assertion that he keeps trying to delay his upcoming civil business-fraud trial through “frivolous conduct.”

Trump’s response? Filed late Tuesday, it boils down to this: No, you’re being frivolous by staging a “side show” for “media attention.”

Trump want the court to delay the upcoming civil business-fraud trial for at least another three or four weeks. 

These new, cross-accusations of frivolity are the latest skirmish in New York’s four-year fight against what state Attorney General Letitia James has called persistent fraud at the Manhattan-based Trump Organization, an effort scheduled to come to a head at a $250 million civil trial set for October 2.

James is hoping to permanently banish Trump Org – the ex-president’s real-estate and golf-resort empire – from New York. She argues its executives routinely exaggerated the value of company assets, sometimes by as much as $2.2 billion a year, in official banking documents.

The judge who will preside at the trial, and decide if that banishment happens, New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron, will likely not take kindly to any request for a delay. He has said more than once said the trial will finally kick off on the October 2 date, come “hell or high water.” 

Still, there’s a hill of paperwork to cut through before a trial can happen, as the ever-growing online docket for the case shows.

On September 30, hundreds of files were added to that already straining docket as lawyers on both sides asked the judge for major, pre-trial decisions.

Not surprisingly, Team Trump wants the whole case thrown out. Their lawyers filed more than 40 documents and exhibits toward that end.

Team James wants at least part of the case decided early and in her favor. Her side won that particular war of words, at least by volume, filing some 230 documents and exhibits, including a 500-page transcript from Trump’s April deposition before the AG’s office, in which he laid out his fraud defense in his own words.

Again, this total of nearly 300 of legal fillings – thousands of pages in all – was filed on a single day in opposing efforts to kill the trial or decide it early.

Which brings us to now, a week later, when both sides are calling each other frivolous – and one side, Trump’s, is asking for a delay – in a new, mini-avalanche of filings that dropped throughout the day on Tuesday.

James’ side filed just three documents, all seeking to fine the Trump defendants and their lawyers $10,000 each over “frivolous conduct” in asking the trial be tossed.

Then Trump’s side, just before midnight, filed nine documents countering that it’s the AG who is being frivolous. Their filings include a “Demand to Withdraw Frivolous Motion” that accuses James of using the court to “garner media attention.”

“As set forth more fully below, the Motion is itself frivolous,” it reads, referring to James’ request for $10,000 frivolity penalties, all around, for Trump, his two eldest sons, his executives and all of their lawyers.

The Trump defendants are being thorough, not frivolous, in repeatedly attacking James’ lawsuit, even if that involves recycling the same, valid arguments at different stages in the litigation, Trump’s team argued Tuesday night.

Those arguments include that the disputed business documents have a disclaimer that renders them immune from accusations of fraud, and that James does not have standing or capacity to sue because any alleged frauds were victimless.

“Indeed, the Motion is nothing more than an obvious attempt to garner media headlines in order to distract attention away from the major substantive flaws in the NYAG’s case,” Trump’s filing says of James’ request for frivolity penalties.

More filings are likely as early as Wednesday. The judge has set September 27 as the final pre-trial hearing date. 

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Donald Trump, again, wants a trial delayed.

Photo by Diane Bondareff/Invision/AP

In 26 days, Trump, his sons, and his real-estate empire are scheduled in a civil fraud trial in New York.
NY Attorney General Letitia James seeks to permanently banish Trump Org from the state.
In a new war of words, Trump is asking for a trial delay as each side calls the other “frivolous.”

Donald Trump’s legal team has answered New York’s assertion that he keeps trying to delay his upcoming civil business-fraud trial through “frivolous conduct.”

Trump’s response? Filed late Tuesday, it boils down to this: No, you’re being frivolous by staging a “side show” for “media attention.”

Trump want the court to delay the upcoming civil business-fraud trial for at least another three or four weeks. 

These new, cross-accusations of frivolity are the latest skirmish in New York’s four-year fight against what state Attorney General Letitia James has called persistent fraud at the Manhattan-based Trump Organization, an effort scheduled to come to a head at a $250 million civil trial set for October 2.

James is hoping to permanently banish Trump Org – the ex-president’s real-estate and golf-resort empire – from New York. She argues its executives routinely exaggerated the value of company assets, sometimes by as much as $2.2 billion a year, in official banking documents.

The judge who will preside at the trial, and decide if that banishment happens, New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron, will likely not take kindly to any request for a delay. He has said more than once said the trial will finally kick off on the October 2 date, come “hell or high water.” 

Still, there’s a hill of paperwork to cut through before a trial can happen, as the ever-growing online docket for the case shows.

On September 30, hundreds of files were added to that already straining docket as lawyers on both sides asked the judge for major, pre-trial decisions.

Not surprisingly, Team Trump wants the whole case thrown out. Their lawyers filed more than 40 documents and exhibits toward that end.

Team James wants at least part of the case decided early and in her favor. Her side won that particular war of words, at least by volume, filing some 230 documents and exhibits, including a 500-page transcript from Trump’s April deposition before the AG’s office, in which he laid out his fraud defense in his own words.

Again, this total of nearly 300 of legal fillings – thousands of pages in all – was filed on a single day in opposing efforts to kill the trial or decide it early.

Which brings us to now, a week later, when both sides are calling each other frivolous – and one side, Trump’s, is asking for a delay – in a new, mini-avalanche of filings that dropped throughout the day on Tuesday.

James’ side filed just three documents, all seeking to fine the Trump defendants and their lawyers $10,000 each over “frivolous conduct” in asking the trial be tossed.

Then Trump’s side, just before midnight, filed nine documents countering that it’s the AG who is being frivolous. Their filings include a “Demand to Withdraw Frivolous Motion” that accuses James of using the court to “garner media attention.”

“As set forth more fully below, the Motion is itself frivolous,” it reads, referring to James’ request for $10,000 frivolity penalties, all around, for Trump, his two eldest sons, his executives and all of their lawyers.

The Trump defendants are being thorough, not frivolous, in repeatedly attacking James’ lawsuit, even if that involves recycling the same, valid arguments at different stages in the litigation, Trump’s team argued Tuesday night.

Those arguments include that the disputed business documents have a disclaimer that renders them immune from accusations of fraud, and that James does not have standing or capacity to sue because any alleged frauds were victimless.

“Indeed, the Motion is nothing more than an obvious attempt to garner media headlines in order to distract attention away from the major substantive flaws in the NYAG’s case,” Trump’s filing says of James’ request for frivolity penalties.

More filings are likely as early as Wednesday. The judge has set September 27 as the final pre-trial hearing date. 

Read the original article on Business Insider
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