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$83.3 Million Awarded to Carroll in Defamation Trial Against Trump

As closing arguments unfolded in the defamation case, Trump's departure disrupted the courtroom decorum. Subsequently, he lost the trial and was directed to pay a substantial $83.3 million

$83.3 Million Awarded to Carroll in Defamation Trial Against Trump

In a significant update, Donald Trump has been instructed by the jury to pay an astronomical sum of $83.3 million in damages, following the closing arguments of his defamation trial on January 26th, Friday. The arguments were presented by Carroll's legal team, who urged the jury to grant a minimum of $24 million in damages for the alleged "storm of hate" instigated by the former president.

 

This substantial compensation further complicates Trump's situation as he finds himself entangled in multiple criminal and civil cases while campaigning for the White House. This stands as the most pronounced legal setback for the former president.

 

E. Jean Carroll, a former magazine columnist, has accused Donald Trump of raping her in a department store during the mid-1990s and defaming her by denying the allegation. In a distinct trial conducted last year, a civil jury concluded that Trump sexually assaulted Carroll. The same jury held him responsible for defamation, as he had labeled her accusations as false. Consequently, in October 2022, he was mandated to compensate her approximately $5 million in damages.

 

Earlier during this trial on Friday, the ex-prime minister abruptly exited the courtroom while Ms. Carroll's lawyer was presenting closing arguments asserting that Mr. Trump, is a dishonest individual who believes rules don't apply to him and lacks respect for the jury. Roberta Kaplan argued in her concluding statements that Trump's defamatory comments about her client significantly damaged her reputation. She emphasized that Trump's disregard for the judicial process was evident, reinforcing the notion that he considers himself exempt from adhering to the rules.

 

Consistently, Mr. Trump has refuted all these allegations, asserting that he has never seen Ms. Carroll before. In a social media post, he characterized it as yet another scam, labeling it a "political witch hunt." Addressing the jury, his lawyer, Alina Habba, described the situation as a scandal, emphasizing that the sole beneficiary is Ms. Carroll, who is now earning more than she did in 2019 when the defamatory comments were initially made. Habba urged the jury not to grant any damages to Ms. Carroll.

 

Kaplan further asserted that Donald Trump, wielding power and wealth, doesn't hesitate to defame others. She concluded her rebuttal by contending that he shows no regard or respect for the law, emphasizing that this trial should impose a hefty financial penalty since money is his sole concern.

 

The verdict undeniably favored them, with the nine-person jury granting a staggering amount of $83.3 million to Ms. Carroll. This sum comprised $18.3 million in compensatory damages, and the remaining $65 million was allocated for punitive damages, intended to penalize Trump and discourage him from participating in any future acts of defamation.

 

Trump, displaying disruptive and impolite behavior walked out of the courtroom during Kaplan's speech and later reappeared at the defense table for the closing argument presented by his lawyer, Alina Habba. Subsequently, he left for the Manhattan courthouse at approximately 4 p.m. and was absent when the verdict was announced.

 

Following Trump's departure, Judge Lewis Kaplan—no relation to the attorney—momentarily halted Roberta Kaplan and stated, "The record will show that Mr. Trump just stood up and left the courtroom."

 

Trump mocked the final verdict, claiming that the legal system is spiraling out of control and being wielded as a political weapon. He also declared intentions to appeal the decision. On the other hand, Carroll and her legal team celebrated the victory, overjoyed. Carroll called this win, a triumph for all women and believed that the jury's decision granted her the justice she sought. She expressed hope that the verdict would serve as an inspiration for other survivors of sexual violence to come forward, speak out, and pursue justice.

 


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