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Home / News / Politics / Judge levies $364M penalty on Trump in civil fraud case

Judge levies $364M penalty on Trump in civil fraud case

by HeyWire AI
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In a momentous decision on Friday, Judge Arthur Engoron imposed a significant $364 million penalty against former President Donald Trump, who has been entangled in legal battles over his business practices. Following a 2½-month trial in New York, Engoron found that Trump had engaged in a scheme to overstate his wealth in financial statements to banks and other institutions.

The case, led by New York Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat, marks a notable victory in her quest to hold Trump accountable for what has been described as deceptive practices. According to James, the issue at hand was not just Trump’s typical grandiosity but a sustained attempt to misrepresent the value of his properties, including golf courses and skyscrapers.

“For years, Donald Trump engaged in massive fraud to falsely inflate his net worth and unjustly enrich himself, his family, and his organization,” James said in a statement. “When powerful people cheat to get better loans, it comes at the expense of honest and hardworking people. Everyday Americans cannot lie to a bank to get a mortgage to buy a home, and if they did, our government would throw the book at them. There simply cannot be different rules for different people.”

Amidst the assertions of wrongdoing, Trump, a Republican and current presidential front-runner, has maintained that he is the target of a politically motivated witch hunt, amplifying claims of a rigged legal system while under oath during his trial.

Notably, the ruling also stipulates that Trump shall be barred from acting as an officer or director of any New York corporation for a period of three years, further constricting his business maneuvers in the state.

Trump’s legal team has signaled their intent to challenge the outcome, stating their plans to appeal even before the ruling was handed down. Trump Attorney Alina Habba called the verdict “manifest injustice” and “the culmination of a multi-year, politically fueled witch hunt.”

Following a three-year investigation, in September 2022 Attorney General James filed a lawsuit against Donald Trump, a number of Trump Organization companies, and senior executives for engaging in years of financial fraud and illegal conduct. In September 2023, before this trial began, Justice Engoron issued a ruling granting Attorney General James’ motion for partial summary judgment, finding that Trump and the defendants committed fraud by falsely inflating the value of his assets.

The consequences of this ruling could echo beyond the financial penalties imposed, possibly impacting Trump’s ongoing political aspirations and his empire’s operations.

As reported by pbs.org and whdh.com.

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