Donald Trump Warned Of Jail Time After Violating Gag Order – Donald Trump has been fined $5,000 for violating a gag order in his New York civil fraud trial.
The former president was fined by Judge Arthur Engoron in relation to an online post regarding court clerk Alison R. Greenfield. Posting a picture of the clerk with Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Trump alleged that she was the “girlfriend” of Sen. Schumer despite lacking evidence to prove otherwise.
That same accusation, first posted on Truth Social, was the reason a gag order was issued against the Republican frontrunner earlier this month. The “untrue and disparaging” post was swiftly deleted, but remained on Trump’s campaign website.
Fine And A Warning
Judge Engoron issued the decision on Friday, threatening jail time for the Republican frontrunner in case of further violations. “Incendiary untruths can and have led to serious physical harm,” Judge Engoron told the court on Friday. “I will now allow the defendant to explain why this should not end up with serious sanctions or I could possibly imprison him.”
Trump’s lawyer, Christopher Kise, apologized on his client’s behalf for the “inadvertent” mistake, claiming that aides forgot to remove the post from Trump’s campaign website when it was removed from his social media platform. Later on Friday, Judge Engoron ruled that the former president must pay a $5,000 fine as “the violation was inadvertent, and given that it is a first time violation.”
“Make no mistake: future violations, whether intentional or unintentional, will subject the violator to far more severe sanctions, which may include, but are not limited to, steeper financial penalties, holding Donald Trump in contempt of court, and possibly imprisoning him,” the New York judge said in his ruling.
Civil Fraud Trial Going As You’d Expect
Trump is facing the loss of his real estate empire in New York as state Attorney General Letitia James seeks $250million in punitive damages. The former president is accused of inflating the value and size of his assets to secure favorable loan agreements, and faces severe restrictions on his ability to conduct business in the state.
Judge Engoron had to intervene earlier in the week over Trump’s behavior. On Wednesday, the 77-year-old and his aides were told to be quiet during a real estate appraiser’s testimony on the witness stand, where Trump was repeatedly shaking his head and throwing his hands in the air in discontent.
A lawyer from the New York Attorney General’s Office asked the judge for assistance, to which he asked others in the court to keep their voices down “particularly if it’s meant to influence the testimony.”
Later that day, a New York court employee was arrested after shouting out to Trump “indicating she wanted to assist him,” according to court officials. She was escorted out of court, placed on administrative leave, and charged with contempt of court.
Shay Bottomley is a British journalist based in Canada. He has written for the Western Standard, Maidenhead Advertiser, Slough Express, Windsor Express, Berkshire Live and Southend Echo, and has covered notable events including the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
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