Trump Responds

Donald Trump

( – Vowing not to concede to the whims of Democrats targeting his businesses, Donald Trump is gearing up to contest the hefty $355 million penalty levied against him in a New York civil fraud case.

His main argument hinges on disputing Judge Arthur Engoron’s interpretation of what constitutes fraud.

Judge Engoron, who is affiliated with the Democratic Party, recently ruled that Trump, his business empire, senior officials and his grown children were responsible for fraudulent activities.

Chris Kise, Trump’s lead attorney, expressed significant concerns over the legal and constitutional implications of the “fraud” allegations and emphasized the absence of actual fraudulent conduct.

Trump and his legal team had previously announced their intention to challenge Engoron’s decision with an appeal at the New York State Supreme Court Appellate Division, First Judicial Department.

Syracuse University Law legal scholar Greg Germain shared that Trump’s appeal holds merit but would need to demonstrate that New York’s Attorney General Letitia James lacks the authority to impose sanctions without establishing traditional fraud elements, which include intent to deceive, factual inaccuracies, victim reliance, significance, causation and resultant harm.

Conversely, James’ team is expected to argue her jurisdiction in pursuing fraud cases without needing to prove all six elements traditionally required.

Germain explained that a thorough application of the six-part fraud definition would reveal scant evidence of the banks’ “reasonable reliance” on Trump’s financial declarations.

Germain hinted at this lack of “reasonable reliance” as a potential focal point for Trump’s appeal since the evidence supporting the banks’ reliance on Trump’s financial statements is notably insubstantial.

Judge Engoron’s verdict followed a trial where James, who pledged to target Trump during her campaign, accused him, his corporation and its executives including his two elder sons of engaging in practices intended to mislead banks, insurers and other entities by overstating his wealth on financial documents.

In a trial without a jury last autumn Engoron determined that Trump had exaggerated his asset values to secure more favorable business financing. The court subsequently deliberated on the financial repercussions for Trump and his associates.

Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump were fined over $4 million each and are prohibited from conducting business in New York for two years.