Donald Trump’s attorneys on Tuesday filed a motion for a new trial in writer E. Jean Carroll’s defamation case and asked a judge to cancel the judgment of $83 million against the former president.

In a federal court filing in New York, Trump attorneys Alina Habba and John Sauer wrote that a district court could grant a motion for a new trial because, they argued, relevant evidence had been excluded and the jury had been “erroneously instructed” on a key component of the case.

“This Court’s erroneous decision to dramatically limit the scope of President Trump’s testimony almost certainly influenced the jury’s verdict, and thus a new trial is warranted,” the attorneys wrote.

Efforts to restrict the scope of Trump’s testimony “were erroneous and prejudicial,” the attorneys added, citing when Trump took the stand and testimony about his state of mind when he made disparaging comments about Carroll was stricken from the record.

“President Trump’s testimony about his own state of mind is the most relevant and probative evidence on the issue of common-law malice, and he was uniquely positioned to address it,” his attorneys wrote.

“By erroneously foreclosing any such testimony—and erroneously striking the one sentence of President Trump’s testimony on this point—the Court all but assured that the jury would make a baseless punitive-damages award,” they added.

Trump’s attorneys further argued that U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan’s jury instruction on common-law malice was erroneous, because it “does not require a showing that intent to injury was the sole…motivation for the challenged statements” that they contend is required by New York law.

Carroll attorney Roberta Kaplan declined to comment on Tuesday’s filing.

Trump’s attorneys contended that the jury’s compensatory and punitive awards are out of proportion and motivated by sympathy rather than evidence and should be canceled. They argued that the $11 million award for reputational harm “is disproportionately high” compared to similar cases and should also be canceled.

In their filing, Trump’s lawyers cited case law that they indicated could reduce the total damages significantly — to no more than $36.6 million.

The request for a new trial comes after a jury in January found that Trump must pay Carroll over $83 million in damages for repeatedly defaming her.

Trump last month sought a pause on enforcement of the $83.3 million verdict pending resolution of his post-trial motions. Trump’s final brief on that motion was filed Saturday. The judge has yet to rule on that matter.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *