Trump Appeals USD83.3M Defamation Verdict by E. Jean Carroll
Trump Appeals USD83.3M Defamation Verdict by E. Jean Carroll

Former President Donald Trump has taken steps to appeal the recent $83.3 million verdict in the defamation case brought by writer E. Jean Carroll. This legal battle emerged after Trump dismissed Carroll's accusation of rape decades ago by labeling her as dishonest.

In his appeal to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan, Trump aims to contest all aspects of the judgment issued on January 26. This includes challenging various orders, rulings, and conclusions leading to the verdict.

Trump disclosed that he has secured a $91.63 million bond from Federal Insurance Co to support his appeal. This amount aligns with the customary practice where bonds are set at 110% of the total judgment. Trump had previously argued against the necessity of posting security, claiming Carroll was adequately protected. Carroll objected, arguing that Trump's stance essentially relied on blind trust.

The case originated from a jury's determination in Manhattan that Trump had defamed Carroll, a former Elle magazine columnist, in June 2019. Trump had denied Carroll's allegation of rape, which she claimed occurred in the mid-1990s in a Bergdorf Goodman department store dressing room in Manhattan.

The jury awarded Carroll $18.3 million in compensatory damages, covering emotional distress and harm to her reputation. Additionally, punitive damages of $65 million were awarded.

Trump has contended that he should not be held liable for any damages, or at the very least, the awarded sums should be significantly reduced. He is also required to provide sufficient security for his impending appeal regarding a $454.2 million verdict in a civil fraud case initiated by New York Attorney General Letitia James.

While Trump offered a $100 million bond for the fraud case, James insisted on full coverage of the judgment. U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan, overseeing Carroll's trial, is yet to rule on Trump's motions for a new trial and a reduction in damages.

Trump's legal team argues that Kaplan's decision to exclude Trump's testimony regarding his state of mind during the alleged defamation tainted the verdict. They believe Trump's intentions in defending himself and his presidency were relevant to determining malicious intent.

Furthermore, they assert that Kaplan made errors in instructing the jury on the burden of proof required to establish malice.

Despite Trump's attempts to delay enforcement of the verdict, Kaplan rejected his plea, stating that Trump failed to prove any potential "irreparable injury" if he were to post a bond.

In a separate defamation case from October 2022, Trump was previously ordered to pay Carroll $5 million. Trump is also appealing that decision and has set aside $5.55 million with the Manhattan court for this purpose.

Both appeals are expected to extend over several years. Carroll, aged 80, and Trump, aged 77, are embroiled in these legal battles while Trump simultaneously prepares for the upcoming November presidential election, where he is positioned as the Republican candidate, likely to face Democratic incumbent Joe Biden in a rematch of the 2020 election.

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