A federal judge has issued a ruling stating that former President Donald Trump is legally responsible for the defamatory statements he made about writer E. Jean Carroll in 2019. Carroll had come forward with allegations that Trump had raped her several decades earlier. The decision by Judge Lewis Kaplan marks a significant development in Carroll’s civil lawsuit against Trump, as it now primarily revolves around determining the amount of monetary damages the former president should pay to Carroll.
In May, another jury in a Manhattan federal court had already ruled in a related case that Trump had sexually abused Carroll during an incident that occurred in a New York department store in the mid-1990s. Additionally, the jury found that he had defamed her by making disparaging comments about her allegations in the fall of the same year. As a result of that ruling, Trump was ordered to pay Carroll $5 million in damages. It’s essential to note that this case was centered on comments Trump made after he had left office.
The recent ruling by Judge Kaplan, in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, is the latest setback for Trump in a series of legal battles initiated by Carroll. It firmly establishes Trump’s liability for the defamatory statements he made about Carroll while he was still serving as president.
The lawsuit, which is now moving forward with a focus on determining the financial compensation owed to Carroll, is scheduled to go to trial on January 15. This trial will not readdress the allegations of sexual abuse or the defamation claims; instead, it will solely revolve around the calculation of damages.
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As news of the ruling spread, lawyers representing both Trump and Carroll have refrained from providing immediate comments on Judge Kaplan’s decision. It remains to be seen how this ruling will impact the ongoing legal battle and whether Trump’s legal team will seek to challenge or appeal the decision in the coming months.
In summary, a federal judge has ruled that Donald Trump is liable for the defamatory statements he made about E. Jean Carroll when she accused him of rape in 2019. This ruling sets the stage for a trial to determine the amount of monetary damages Trump should pay to Carroll, further escalating the legal troubles faced by the former president in connection with this case.