Former United States president Donald Trump had a temporary respite in his ongoing civil fraud case trial as a New York court on Friday (Oct 6) granted a delay in cancelling his licenses to operate his businesses in the state. In a ruling from an appeals court, Judge Peter Moulton refused to suspend the trial but ruled that a stay was granted on the “order directing the cancellation of business certificates.”
Judge Moulton heard arguments by Trump’s lawyers and by attorneys for the plaintiff, New York Attorney General Letitia James, who is seeking a $250 million judgment against Trump, accused of fraudulent business filings.
As per a report by ABC News, Trump’s lawyer Christopher Kise argued, “This is everything owned or controlled by the defendant. Once you dissolve, you dissolve.”
On the other hand, James’ lawyer Judy Vale, argued that “there’s just absolutely no basis for an interim stay of trial that’s already been going on for a week.”
The civil fraud case
New York Attorney General Letitia James has accused Trump, a 2024 presidential hopeful, of inflating the value of his assets by billions of dollars to secure better loan and insurance terms.
James is seeking at least $250 million in fines, a permanent ban against Trump and his adult sons Donald Jr and Eric from running businesses in New York, and a five-year commercial real estate ban against Trump and the Trump Organization.
The case concerns accusations by the attorney general that the former US president inflated his assets and his net worth from 2011 to 2021 to obtain favourable bank loans and lower insurance premiums.
The hearing in the case started on Monday after a surprise ruling from Judge Arthur Engoron late last month that there had been repeated fraud by the Trump Organization. Engoron ordered the cancellation of the business license of Trump and his sons Don Jr and Eric.
On Monday, Trump said that the case was a “scam,” a “sham” and a political vendetta. And as the session broke off for a lunch break, Trump called Letitia James “a corrupt person, a terrible person. Driving people out of New York.”