Judge dismisses Trump’s defamation lawsuit against E.G. Carroll

Judge dismisses Trump's defamation lawsuit against E.G. Carroll

By Jonathan Stempel

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A U.S. judge on Monday dismissed Donald Trump’s counter-defamation lawsuit against writer E.G. Carroll, handing the former president a new legal defeat as he pleads for another term in the White House.

U.S. District Judge Louis Kaplan in Manhattan said Carroll’s statements, made on CNN the day after she won a $5 million jury verdict against Trump for defamation and sexual assault, were at least “substantially true,” and fail Trump actually shows it. grudge.

“We strongly oppose the flawed decision and will file an appeal soon,” said Alina Hababa, Trump’s attorney.

Trump, 77, filed a counterclaim in a second defamation lawsuit from Carroll, 79, who is seeking at least $10 million.

A trial is scheduled for January 15, 2024.

Trump is the front-runner for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination.

He also pleaded not guilty to criminal charges in three separate indictments, including his efforts to reverse his loss in the 2020 election and his role in the events leading up to the January 6, 2021 attack on the US Capitol.

Trump sued Carroll after the former Elle columnist said “Oh yeah, he did; oh yeah, he did” when asked on CNN about the jury finding that he did not rape her.

He also took issue with Carroll’s account of how she told his lawyer “He did it and you knew it” shortly after the verdict was read.

Kaplan had previously found compelling evidence that Trump “deliberately and forcefully” penetrated Carroll’s vagina with his fingers, causing immediate pain and long-term emotional and psychological harm.

The ruling reversed that “Mr. Trump ‘rape’ her,” Kaplan wrote on Monday, “albeit digitally and not with his penis.” “Thus, it proves against him the essential truth of Mrs. Carroll’s accusations of rape.”

Kaplan also hit out at some of Trump’s positive defenses, including that he has “absolute presidential immunity” and that Carroll is ineligible for punitive damages.

Roberta Kaplan, who represents Carroll and is not connected to the judge, said she is pleased with Monday’s decision, which means January’s trial “won’t take long to complete.”

Both lawsuits stem from Trump’s denials that he forced himself on him and raped Carroll in the dressing room of Bergdorf Goodman’s Manhattan department store in the mid-1990s.

Carroll is suing Trump’s comments in June 2019 that he didn’t know her, that she wasn’t “his type,” and that she lied to increase sales of her memoir.

The $5 million ruling stemmed from a similar denial made in a social media post in October 2022, in which Trump called the incident a “hoax and a lie” and a “total fraud”.

Carroll amended her lawsuit after Trump disparaged her as a “misguided job” at CNN’s town hall after the ruling.

The lawsuit is Carroll v. Trump, US District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 20-07311.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Grant McCall and Howard Goller)

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