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Trump blasts ‘clubhouse politician’ judge after being fined $350M, defends the ‘great company’ he built

Exclusive: Former President Trump on Friday criticized “clubhouse politician” Judge Arthur Engoron for banning him from operating a business in New York for three years and fining him more than $350 million, calling out the “clubhouse politician” he built. Defending “a great company,” the judge told Fox News Digital: This is another example of how Democrats are “trying to stop” him but “do not succeed.”

Engoron was sentenced Friday after a months-long civil fraud trial that began in October, stemming from a lawsuit by New York Attorney General Letitia James alleging that the former president inflated his assets and committed fraud. I put it down.

Trump banned from business, ordered to pay more than $350 million in New York civil fraud case

Trump spoke exclusively to Fox News Digital on Friday afternoon, shortly after Engoron’s verdict was announced.

“A crooked judge in New York, before he knew me, before he knew anything about me, ran with a highly corrupt New York attorney general who ran on the basis of ‘getting Trump’. We’re cooperating and they just ruled that I have to pay a fine of $355 million that is completely baseless,” Trump told Fox News Digital. “No victims, no damages caused. Great financial statements with full disclaimers, only success.”

L – Former President Donald Trump R – New York State Judge Arthur Engoron (Fox News)

“The banks and the insurance companies were overjoyed. They just made money. There were no defaults, nothing, while a lot of banks were losing money,” Trump told Fox News Digital. Ta.

President Trump said, “This is a witch hunt where a judge ruled against me before even looking at the case,” and that Engoron was “worth $50 to $100 when Mar-a-Lago is worth $50 to $100. , strongly stated that it was worth $18 million.” Many times more than that. ”

During September, ruled by Engoron Mr. Trump and the Trump Organization committed fraud while building a real estate empire, overstating Mr. Trump’s assets on documents used to secure transactions and financing, and defrauding banks, insurance companies and others by exaggerating his net worth. He claimed that he had done so.

Trump also said Engoron “has already been overturned four times on this case, which is a record.”

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Mr. Trump was referring to a ruling by the New York State Appellate Division.

President Trump said, “I’ve built a great company, and now I’ve been suspended for three years because of this assault by a politician judge in the clubhouse.” The lawsuit has been “transferred to the commercial division.” “He should have been,” but Engoron said, “I won’t allow that.” ”

President Trump told Fox News Digital that Engoron is “a political hack working in conjunction with an unscrupulous attorney general in the greatest election interference case this country has ever seen.”

In his 92-page ruling, Judge Engoron criticized Trump and his testimony during the trial, saying, “Trump rarely answered questions and frequently gave long, unrelated speeches on issues far beyond the scope of the trial.” “I caught it,” he said.

“His refusal to answer questions directly, or in some cases not at all, seriously damaged his credibility,” Engoron wrote.

Asked for his reaction, President Trump told Fox News Digital: “I answered the questions very candidly. The financial statements speak for themselves. They’re great financial statements.”

“He’s just a clubhouse politician,” Trump said. “This country is in worse shape than Russia has ever been.”

“They’re doing this because I’m leading Biden by a wide margin in the polls,” Trump told Fox News Digital. “They are trying to stop me, but they are not successful.”

He added, “I’m fighting for America. I’m fighting for the people.”

President Trump told Fox News Digital that he had “already won the majority of the appeals” in the New York State Appellate Division, and that Engoron “refused to certify because he had already lost four there,” but added, We will appeal the remaining charges.” ”

Letitia James sits in the courtroom audience during the Trump trial.

New York Attorney General Letitia James sits in court in the fraud trial of former President Donald Trump and his children on Friday, Nov. 3. (Dave Sanders Poole/Getty Images)

Engoron said Trump and the defendants committed “persistent and repeated fraud,” “falsifying business records,” “issuing false financial statements,” “conspiracy to falsify false financial statements,” “insurance fraud,” The court found him liable for “conspiracy to commit insurance fraud.” . ”

The judge also barred Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump from serving as officers or directors of any New York business or corporation for two years.

Engoron also claims that defendants Allen Weisselberg, former chief financial officer of the Trump Organization, and former executive director Jeffrey McConney are “a New York corporation or similar business registered and/or chartered in the State of New York.” Permanently prohibited from engaging in financial management functions of the body. in the State of New York,” where he shall serve for three years as a director of a New York corporation or other corporation located in New York.

New York Attorney General Letitia James filed a lawsuit accusing President Trump and the Trump Organization of deceptive business practices. The court proceedings were contentious, with Engoron repeatedly defeating Trump. partial gag order This is to prevent him from criticizing court officials.

Letitia James’ civil lawsuit challenging Trump’s gag order in New York dismissed

James was seeking $370 million from Trump, plus 9% interest on the penalty. Funds awarded will be contributed to the New York State Treasury unless otherwise directed by the State Comptroller.

Trump’s lawyers He also repeatedly criticized the lack of jurors in the trial.

“A jury trial was never an option,” President Trump’s press secretary told Fox News Digital last month. “It is unfortunate that a jury will not be able to hear how absurd the merits of this case are and conclude that no wrongdoing occurred.”

Trump and his family have denied any wrongdoing, and the former president said his assets were undervalued. Trump’s lawyers argued that there was a disclaimer in his financial statements and made it clear that banks should conduct their own evaluations.

Mr. Trump with an irritated expression

Former US President Donald Trump appears in court on the third day of his civil fraud trial in New York State Supreme Court on October 4, 2023. (Mary Altafia Pool/Getty Images)

President Trump said the financial statements were “perfect” and that the bank loan had been repaid and he was “couldn’t be happier.”

Throughout the trial, Mr. Trump’s lawyers called witnesses, including former Deutsche Bank executives, who testified that the banks viewed Mr. Trump as a “customer whale” and sought additional business from him.

Trump’s defense also brought in expert witnesses, including New York University accounting professor Eli Bartov, who reviewed Trump’s financial statements at issue in the case and found no evidence of accounting fraud. Stated.

Bartov testified last month that President Trump’s financial statements did not violate accounting principles, suggesting that everything at issue, including the estimated value of his Trump Tower penthouse, which increased significantly from year to year, was simply a mistake. did.

“My main finding is that there is no evidence of any accounting fraud,” Bartov testified. He said there were “no material misstatements” in President Trump’s financial statements.

Mr. James’s office ordered Engoron to bar Mr. Trump, his sons, and other defendants from applying for loans in New York for five years, in addition to blocking the Trump Organization from handling any real estate business for the same period. was demanding.

Trump and his team pointed to comments James made to supporters when he ran for office.

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“We’re definitely going to sue him. It’s going to really hurt,” James once told supporters in a video.

James has previously said that Trump is an “existential threat” and that “the biggest problem in this country is to defeat Donald Trump.”

“Nothing else matters,” James said.

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