What Trump’s legal perils mean for his White House bid for 2024


6. Where do the civil cases stand?

The New York attorney-general’s civil suit against Mr Trump and three of his children for allegedly inflating the value of his real estate company’s assets is, perhaps, the biggest threat to the former president’s wealth, as well as his image as a successful businessman.

Ms James is seeking US$250 million in disgorgement and a permanent ban on the four Trumps doing business in New York. She has already succeeded in winning a court order for an independent monitor to oversee the Trump Organisation, a move that could bring unprecedented scrutiny to the former president’s finances.

Mr Trump in November was sued for battery by New York advice columnist E. Jean Carroll, who claims that he raped her in a department store dressing room in the 1990s. The suit was filed under New York’s recently enacted Adult Survivors Act, which lifted the statute of limitations for one year on civil claims for sexual offences.

Mr Trump was already facing a potential trial next year in a defamation suit brought by Ms Carroll over his comments, when she first made her accusation in 2019, that Ms Carroll was “not his type” and that she made up the claim to boost sales of her book.

Mr Trump said he is shielded from liability in that suit because he was a government employee undertaking an official act when he denied Ms Carroll’s allegation.

In her battery lawsuit, Ms Carroll included a new allegation of defamation against Mr Trump, based on a social media post he wrote after leaving office.

Mr Trump, his company and his three oldest children are also facing a class-action lawsuit filed in 2018 by four investors who claimed that they were duped by his promotions into paying thousands of dollars to become independent sellers with ACN Opportunity, which sold a doomed videophone device that Mr Trump touted as the next big thing. The devices were made obsolete by smartphones. Mr Trump sat for questions in October.

Mr Trump was sued by 12 Democratic lawmakers accusing him of sparking the Jan 6 riot. Multiple Capitol police officers also sued Mr Trump for physical injuries and racist abuse suffered during that day. Through appeals, Mr Trump is trying to get the cases dismissed.

Ms Mary Trump, the former president’s niece, sued her uncle, his late brother and older sister for allegedly cheating her out of her share of the family fortune. Mr Trump won dismissal of the lawsuit on Nov 14 and Ms Trump is seeking to have it reinstated.

A group of Michigan voters also sued Mr Trump and his re-election campaign in 2020 for mass voter suppression, particularly among Black voters. Mr Trump’s attempt to dismiss the case was partially granted; the Michigan group sought more time to file a second complaint. BLOOMBERG



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