February 29, 2024

Trump refuses to testify at New York fraud trial


Trump refuses to testify at New York fraud trial

From a business perspective, a conviction would be hugely damaging to Donald Trump.

Photo: Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/AP Pool/dpa

The former US president was actually scheduled to appear in court in New York today in the fraud trial against him. Now Donald Trump says he won’t make any further statements.

New York. Former US President Donald Trump has declined to testify in person at a fraud trial in New York today. The 77-year-old made the announcement on an online site he co-founded called “Truth Social”.

He had already testified “very successfully and convincingly,” Trump wrote in capital letters in a lengthy statement. Trump was expected to appear as a defense witness today in the final phase of the trial, which has been ongoing since early October.

The civil case concerns the future of the 77-year-old corporate empire. The attorney general’s office accuses Trump, his sons and employees of manipulating the value of the Trump Organization over the years to get cheap loans and insurance deals. Trump, a Republican, has not been threatened with a prison sentence or a direct impact on his presidential bid, but a conviction could cause major business damage to him.

New York State Attorney General Letitia James wants Trump to pay $250 million and no longer be allowed to do business in New York.

Trump already testified in a heated and sometimes chaotic meeting in November and repeatedly insisted that the value of his real estate was undervalued, not inflated. However, he freely admitted that he influenced and sometimes contradicted the financial statements. His children, Donald Jr., Eric and Ivanka, were also questioned by the state prosecutor.

The former president is seeking re-election in 2024. He is the most promising candidate for the Republican nomination. According to many observers, he is using the process as an election campaign.

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