Trump appeals fraud judge's gag order to New York's highest court

 December 4, 2023

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

President Trump has appealed to the state's highest court a gag order from New York Judge Arthur Engoron censoring Trump's comments about the fraud case brought by Letitia James, the state's attorney general.

The Washington Examiner said the appeal was filed Monday less than a week after the gag order was reinstated.

One of the reasons Engoron cited for his censorship was Trump's comments about his clerk, Allison Greenfield, who already has come under criticism over her "past donations to Democratic politicians," which could be a violation of ethics codes.

She's also been accused of being given "unprecedented and inappropriate latitude" in the case.

Trump's appeal was filed with the New York Court of Appeals.

The Examiner explained, "Ever since the first weeks of Trump's civil business fraud trial in October, the former president has been under a limited gag order due to his social media posts referencing Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron's staff. A filing appeared on the New York Appellate Division, First Judicial Department docket on Monday, showing Trump's intent to appeal the lower court's decision to the state's highest court."

Engoron has complained that Greenfield has been getting "harassing and antisemitic messages" since Trump posted her photograph with Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and called her a "girlfriend."

The judge also has censored comments by Trump's lawyers.

The report explained, "Trump's appeal comes as the former president on Thursday started making social media posts focused on Engoron's family, surfacing allegations from influencers like Laura Loomer, who claimed the judge's wife was posting anti-Trump images and rhetoric online. Engoron's wife, Dawn Marie Engoron, has denied the account belonged to her."

It already has been documented that James has moved to the extremes in the case – demanding Trump's companies in New York be killed and he pays $250 million in penalties when there has been no documentation of any victim of anything.

She has claimed he inflated the values of his properties to defraud banks but there were no unpaid loans, and one bank executive said the valuation of the properties was largely irrelevant.

It was on the topic of the valuation of Trump's properties that Engoron wildly claimed Trump's Mar-a-Lago home was worth some $18 million, triggering vast eye-rolling and guffaws from real estate experts who say it likely is worth at least 50 times that.

It was George Washington University Law professor Jonathan Turley who suggested the attacks by James, who campaigned for office on the promise to "get" Trump, on Trump were "unconstitutional."

He explained, "It is relatively rare for civil damages to trigger constitutional review, and it is still far from clear that this case will rise to that level." But he said James is demanding penalties that could be of interest to a higher court.

Turley explained in the 1996 case BMW of North America v. Gore, the Supreme Court found that $2 million in punitive fines imposed on a company that repainted cars damaged in transit without informing customers violated the Due Process clause because it was "grossly excessive."

“Effective dissolution of Trump’s business and a quarter-billion dollars in damages may raise analogous concerns over excessive penalties,” he wrote.

"In the Trump case, the banks made money.” Turley continued. “It would be akin to the car owner’s value going up with the paint job but still hitting BMW with punitive damages.”

It was a Deutsche Bank official who gave the court testimony that "blew up" the case.

A report in The Gateway Pundit explains now how testimony from a Deutsche Bank official undermined James' claims.

The report first explained the executive "gave testimony that could bolster Donald Trump’s defense in his civil fraud trial, telling a New York judge that prospective clients can get loans even after reporting a net worth far higher than the lender’s own calculations."

"David Williams, who worked on at least one of three loans Deutsche Bank made to Trump in the years before he was elected president, testified Tuesday that it's 'atypical, but not entirely unusual' for the bank to cut a client’s stated asset value by 50% and approve a loan anyway, as it did with Trump."

Williams worked on at least one of the loans Deutsche Bank made to Trump before he was president, and said the stated assets are merely an opinion and a difference of opinion in asset values does not disqualify a borrower.

The Pundit explained, "Radical Marxist New York Attorney General Letitia James is seeking $250 million in 'damages' when there is no victim in this fraud case and she is also seeking to ban Trump and his sons from operating any businesses in New York. She accused Trump of inflating his assets and defrauding lenders and insurance companies."

The banker said such lending "is typical in high net-worth, high-profile clients like Donald Trump," the report explained.


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