Trump’s Thanksgiving message attacks fraud trial judge and clerk: Live

Death threats and antisemitic rants ‘inundated’ Justice Arthur Engoron and his law clerk after former president attacked them on social media, court security official says in affidavit

Oliver O'Connell,Alex Woodward
Friday 24 November 2023 22:39

Related Video: Trump claims he wasn’t referring to clerk when he violated fraud trial gag order

Donald Trump launched a fresh attack on the judge and court clerk in his New York civil fraud trial hours after a court filing stated his prior attacks had led to them being “inundated” with violent threats.

In what was bizarrely named a “Happy Thanksgiving” post on Truth Social, the former president unleashed once again on what he described as “the Racist & Incompetent Attorney General of New York State, Letitia ‘Peekaboo’ James”, “the Radical Left Trump Hating Judge, a ‘Psycho,’ Arthur Engoron” and “his Politically Biased & Corrupt Campaign Finance Violator, Chief Clerk Alison Greenfield”.

Hours earlier, a court security official said Mr Trump’s violation of his fraud trial gag order led to Justice Arthur Engoron and his staff facing hundreds of “serious and credible” threats.

“When Mr Trump violated the gag orders, the number of threatening, harassing and disparaging messages increased,” according to Wednesday’s filing, supporting the judge’s opposition to the gag order pause.

Many of the threats were antisemitic and came by phone, text, email, and social media, with transcriptions of voicemails delivered to Judge Engoron’s law clerk amounting to 275 pages, the filing noted.


The latest: Trump lawyers dismiss death threats as ‘irrelevant’ to federal gag order

A wave of death threats and antisemitic and homophobic messages were sent to the judge overseeing Donald Trump’s fraud trial, as well as his chief clerk, according to a state court filing this week.

A filing to support New York Justice Arthur Engoron’s opposition to a freeze on a gag order in the case includes a statement from the court’s top security official, who has collected “hundreds of threats, disparaging and harassing comments and antisemitic messages” that followed the former president’s harassment.

Federal prosecutors – who are seeking a separate gag order – shared those threats with the federal appeals court judges who will decide whether Mr Trump should be gagged in his election interference case.

But on Friday, the former president’s attorneys dismissed those threats as “irrelevant”.

Read more from The Independent:

Trump lawyers dismiss death threats as ‘irrelevant’ to federal gag order

Prosecutors warned judges about his fraud trial threats. His attorneys called it ‘irrelevant information’

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 22:00

Wife of Iowa GOP official found guilty on 52 counts of election fraud from 2020

The wife of a Republican politician in Iowa has been convicted of dozens of criminal charges related to a 2020 voter fraud scheme aimed at getting her husband into office.

Kim Phuong Taylor submitted absentee ballots on behalf of voters who had not given her permission to do so.

She was convicted of 52 counts in total, including 26 counts of providing false information in registering and voting, 23 counts of voter fraud, and three counts of fraudulently registering to vote. She could face up to five years in prison for each charge.

The Independent’s John Bowden has more:

Wife of Iowa GOP official found guilty on 52 counts of election fraud from 2020

Kim Phuong Taylor convicted on more than 50 counts for trying to help her husband get elected

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 21:30

The latest: Trump attorneys continue to fight federal gag order

Days after a federal appeals court panel grilled Trump’s legal team over their opposition to a gag order in his election interference case in Washington DC, his attorneys struck back in a letter to the court clerk to blast both the gag order and the case itself.

They dismissed death threats in his New York fraud case as irrelevant, while accusing special counsel Jack Smith of bringing “an inflammatory, lawless indictment” against Trump, making “false and misleading statements” about him, and leading “confidential information in order to harm” him.

“Both the indictment and the Gag Order represent an unconstitutional attempt to silence President Trump; they are clearly election interference,” they wrote.

The words echo the former president’s campaign-trail remarks and rhetoric on social media, where he posts conspiracy theories accusing prosecutors and judges of working with Democratic officials to keep him away from the White House.

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 21:00

Just in: Dean Phillips won’t seek re-election to Congress

Dean Phillips, who is pursuing a long-shot challenge against President Joe Biden for the Democratic nomination in 2024, announced that he won’t be seeking his re-election to Congress.

He is currently a state representative for Minnesota.

Mr Phillips already was facing several interparty challenges for his seat in Congress after he began mulling plans to challenge Mr Biden.

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 20:34

ICYMI: Fani Willis made her courtroom debut in the election interference case

Georgia prosecutor Fani Willis made her debut arguing before a judge and questioning witnesses in a case surrounding Donald Trump’s sprawling election interference case this week.

She ressed a judge to revoke a bond order for one of Trump’s co-defendants who repeatedly posted about several people involved the case despite the terms of his release prohibiting him from communication with witnesses or co-defendants “directly or indirectly”.

The appearance from Ms Willis previewed the arguments, evidence and list of witnesses expected to testify in the upcoming trial, among several criminal cases surrounding the frontrunner for the 2024 Republican nomination for president.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee declined to send Harrison Floyd back to jail and directed the parties to draft an order that reels in his public statements.

Fulton County DA Fani Willis makes Trump courtroom debut

Georgia prosecutor pressed a judge to revoke bond for one of the ex-president’s co-defendants for witness intimidation

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 19:15

Georgia Supreme Court rejects GOP attempts to remove state prosecutors – including Fani Willis

Georgia’s Supreme Court rejected a commission’s authority to remove state prosecutors, which Republican officials had hoped to use against Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, whose sprawling racketeering case against Donald Trump and his co-defendants is steering towards a criminal trial in Atlanta.

A ruling from the court on Wednesday surrounding the Prosecuting Attorneys Qualifications Commission – which was established by Republican Governor Brian Kemp earlier this year – argued it does not have the constitutional authority to do so.

Mr Kemp said the committee was created to remove local prosecutors who did not fulfill their “constitutional and statutory duties” or were “driven by out-of-touch politics.”

Republican lawmakers in the state intended to wield that authority against Ms Willis and other Democratic elected prosecutors.

But the state’s highest court has “grave doubts that we have the constitutional power to take any action on the draft standards and rules,” according to the ruling.

DeKalb County District Attorney Sherry Boston, among several Georgia prosecutors who sued to overturn the commission, said they are “pleased the justices have taken action to stop this unconstitutional attack on the state’s prosecutors.”

“While we celebrate this as a victory, we remain steadfast in our commitment to fight any future attempts to undermine the will of Georgia voters and the independence of the prosecutors who they choose to represent them,” she added.

Fani Willis argues before Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee on 22 November.

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 18:35

Elise Stefanik takes credit for gag order ruling she had nothing to do with

Elise Stefanik is among congressional Republicans defending the former president in the court of public opinion as he faces a potentially crushing judgment in his civil fraud trial.

She filed an ethics complaint against the judge overseeing the trial, and then took credit for an appeals court ruling that temporarily paused a gag order in the case.

Ms Stefanik, the third-ranking House Republican, now appears to be using the gag order in her election messaging.

From her personal campaign account, she claimed that she “fought to lift President Trump’s gag order and won.” Her statements did not appear to have anything to do with the order.

“But the fight doesn’t end here. We must work to re-elect Trump on November 5, 2024,” she added. “Together, we can protect ALL Americans’ First Amendment and due process rights.”

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 17:45

Rudy Giuliani sued for allegedly skipping out on $10k payment to accounting firm

Rudy Giuliani is facing yet another lawsuit.

A former associate is suing him for $10,000, adding to the mountain of debt the former New York City mayor and Trump attorney is facing.

BST & Co. CPAs, LLP, an accounting firm based in Latham, New York, claims he had the company conduct an appraisal of his business interests while he separated from his wife, Judith Nathan, without paying them.

Including interest, the firm now seeks to recover about $25,000.

Michelle Del Rey reports:

Giuliani sued for allegedly skipping out on $10k payment to accounting firm

The suit is not the only battle the former New York City mayor is facing

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 17:20

Michael Cohen: Trump is watching himself lose in court ‘every single day'

Trump’s former attorney Michael Cohen, who testified against him in the civil fraud trial in New York, said his former boss is “seeing himself lose every single day” he is in court.

“That case is going to financially put Trump on his a**, not to mention it is going to unwind the Trump corporation, at least here in the state,” he said on his podcast on Thursday.

“It becomes what’s known as the death spiral where you’re no longer able to operate,” he added.

Judge Arthur Engoron, who is overseeing the case, already found Trump liable for fraud, in a pretrial judgment that effectively dissolved his ability to do business in the state. That part of the order has been temporarily frozen on appeal.

Michael Cohen leaves New York State Supreme Court after testifying in the civil fraud trial on 25 October.

Trump has called the judgment “the corporate death penalty” against him, as he continues to base his campaign a conspiracy theory that the multiple criminal and civil cases against him are intended to keep him away from the White House.

In his two-day testimony in the fraud trial, Cohen claimed he was “tasked by Mr Trump to increase the total assets based upon a number that he arbitrarily elected” for his statement of financial condition, the documents at the centre of the case.

Cohen and convicted former Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg were instructed to “reverse engineer the various different asset classes – increase those assets – in order to achieve the number that Mr Trump had tasked us with,” Cohen said.

Asked by counsel for the attorney general’s office what that number was, Cohen replied: “Whatever number Mr Trump told us to.”

Under questioning from Trump’s attorneys, Cohen agreed that his former boss never explicitly asked him to “inflate” the figures at the centre of the case.

“Donald Trump speaks like a mob boss,” Cohen testified. “He tells you what he wants without specifically telling you … That’s what I was referring to.”

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 16:45

Trump plans to visit Javier Milei, according to Argentina’s new president-elect

Trump reportedly told Argentina’s far-right president-elect Javier Milei that he plans to travel to meet him, Mr Milei’s office said on Thursday.

The office did not provide a date. Mr Milei is scheduled to be inaugurated on 10 December.

“The president-elect received a call last night from the former president of the United States, Donald Trump, who congratulated him and pointed out his triumph by a wide margin in last Sunday’s election had a great impact on a global scale,” according to a statement from Mr Milei’s office.

In a video on Tuesday, Trump said: “I am very proud of you. You will turn your country around and truly make Argentina great again.”

President Joe Biden, meanwhile, also has called Mr Milei following his election victory to discuss “the strong relationship between the United States and Argentina on economic issues, on regional and multilateral cooperation, and on shared priorities, including advocating for the protection of human rights, addressing food insecurity and investing in clean energy.”

Meet South America’s incoming new MAGA-like leader:

South America’s Trump wins election: Meet Argentina’s new MAGA-like leader

Right-wing populist plots massive changes to Argentina’s political system

Alex Woodward24 November 2023 16:10

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