Trump Can’t Get Out of Deposit in E. Jean Carroll Defamation Case, Judge Rules



CNN

A federal judge rejected former President Donald Trump’s attempt to put his impeachment on hold in a libel case scheduled for later this month, saying Trump’s efforts to delay the case are “inexcusable.”

Trump is scheduled to be impeached on October 19 in a libel suit brought by E. Jean Carroll, a former magazine columnist who accused Trump of raping her in a department store in the mid-1990s. Trump has denied the allegations.

Judge Lewis Kaplan said the trial was not over yet, and since they are waiting for a federal appeals court to rule on a key element of the case, “it would not impose on Mr. Trump, let alone any irreparable harm.”

“The defendant should not be allowed to run out the clock on the plaintiff’s attempt to obtain a remedy for what was allegedly a serious wrong,” Kaplan wrote.

The judge said Carroll would face “substantial harm” from further delay, citing the lengthy appeals process, which has already taken 20 months and is still not over, and the ages of Carroll and Trump, who are both in their 70s. the ones. Carroll’s deposition is scheduled for this Friday.

Kaplan noted Trump’s efforts to delay the trial and said his production of “virtually” no documents was “inexcusable.”

A lawyer for Trump could not immediately be reached.

“We are pleased that Judge Kaplan agreed with our position to remain in discovery in this case. We look forward to filing our case under the Adult Survivors Act and proceeding to trial with all due diligence,” said Roberta Kaplan, Carroll’s lawyer.

Carroll’s lawyer had suggested that Trump wanted to stop his impeachment after learning that she intends to sue him in November under a new New York state law that allows sexual assault victims to sue years after the meeting.

The judge said the question of whether Trump raped Carroll is “so central” to the current case and future litigation and to stop the impeachment now because it could be used in the future “would make no sense.”

Carroll sued Trump for defamation in 2019 after he denied raping her in the mid-1990s, saying she was not his type and accusing her of fabricating the claim to boost sales of her book.

Trump and the Justice Department argued that Trump was a federal employee and his statements denying Carroll’s allegations were made in response to reporters’ questions while he was in the White House. They argued that the Justice Department should be substituted as a defendant, which, because the government cannot be sued for defamation, would end the lawsuit. Judge Kaplan ruled against Trump and the DOJ. They appealed.

Last month, a federal appeals court ruled that Trump was a federal employee when he dismissed Carroll’s rape and sexual assault claim. However, the federal appeals court in New York asked the DC Court of Appeals to determine whether Trump was acting within the scope of that employment when he made the allegedly defamatory statements. If the D.C. court finds that Trump acted within his role, the Justice Department would likely be replaced as a defendant.

The DC Court of Appeals has not yet taken up the case.

This story has been updated with additional details.

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