Trump ordered to pay $355 million penalty in New York civil fraud case

NEW YORK — A judge in New York has imposed a $355 million penalty in a civil fraud lawsuit filed against former President Donald Trump.

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Trump speaks following ruling

Update 6:11 p.m. EST Feb. 16: Former President Donald Trump spoke Friday from Mar-a-Lago in South Florida after Judge Arthur Engoron made a ruling in the New York civil fraud case.

“Very sad day for, in my opinion, the country,” Trump said, according to CNN. Trump also promised that he would appeal the ruling on Friday.

Earlier in the day, Trump made a statement on his Truth Social.

“This ‘decision’ is a Complete and Total SHAM,” Trump said on Truth Social, according to CNN. “The Justice System in New York State, and America as a whole, is under assault by partisan, deluded, biased Judges and Prosecutors. Racist, Corrupt A.G. Tish James has been obsessed with ‘Getting Trump’ for years, and used Crooked New York State Judge Engoron to get an illegal, unAmerican judgment against me, my family, and my tremendous business.”

-- Jessica Goodman, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

Attorney General Letitia James speaks following ruling

Update 6:07 p.m. EST Feb. 16: Attorney General Letitia James shared remarks Friday after the ruling in which former President Donald Trump was ordered to pay $355 million.

“After 11 weeks of trial we showed the staggering extent of his fraud, and exactly how Donald Trump and the other defendants deceived banks, insurance companies, and other financial institutions for their own personal gain,” James said, according to CNN.

“We proved just how much Donald Trump, his family and his company unjustly benefited from his fraud,” she added.

“Today, the court, once again, ruled in our favor and in favor of every hard-working American who plays by the rules,” she said.

-- Jessica Goodman, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

$364 million total

Update 5:36 p.m. EST Feb. 16: A judge ordered former President Donald Trump and his companies to pay $355 million, according to The Associated Press. With $8 million combined from both Trump sons and $1 million to be paid by former chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg, the total rose to $364 million

-- Jessica Goodman, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

Trump barred from holding executive office at a New York company

Update 3:22 p.m. EST Feb. 16: In addition to the penalty, former President Donald Trump is not allowed to hold executive offices at a company in New York or run his own company for three years, according to The New York Times. He is also unable to get any loans from banks in New York for about three years, The Associated Press reported.

-- Jessica Goodman, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

Trump ordered to pay $355 million penalty

Update 3:15 p.m. EST Feb. 16: Former President Donald Trump has been ordered to pay a $355 million penalty, according to The Associated Press. Trump was found liable for trying to “manipulate his net worth,” according to The New York Times.

Trump’s sons, Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr., are both not allowed to serve as an officer or director of any corporation in New York for about two years. According to the Times, they were both ordered to pay $4 million each.

Trump’s lawyers plan to appeal the verdict.

-- Jessica Goodman, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

Original story: Trump, his adult sons and his business are accused of lying about the value of their properties for years in order to get more favorable terms from insurers lenders and insurers. Trump allegedly inflated his net worth by as much as $3.6 billion a year over a decade, Reuters reported.

The former president has denied any wrongdoing, calling the case politically motivated as he continues to lead Republican candidates in the 2024 race for the White House.

“This is a case that should have never been brought,” he told reporters after sitting for testimony in November. “It’s a case that should be dismissed immediately. The fraud was on behalf of the court.”

The former president could face millions of dollars in penalties. New York Attorney General Letitia James seeking a $370 million fine and a ruling that bars Trump and others involved in the case from doing business in the state.

“Donald Trump illegally profited off his years of financial fraud,” James said in January. “Everyday Americans can’t lie and cheat the system for their own personal profit, and neither can former presidents.”

Judge Arthur Engoron heard from dozens of witnesses over the course of Trump’s trial, which began in October and wrapped up in January.

The judge ruled in September that Trump had committed fraud while building his real estate empire years before he ran for president in 2016. As a result, Engoron ordered that some of Trump’s companies be removed from his control and dissolved, an order that an appeals court has paused, The Associated Press reported.

Engoron’s decision on Friday is expected to resolve the remaining claims in James’ lawsuit, including whether Trump conspired with top executives to violate the law, according to The New York Times.

As the case is a civil trial, there is no chance that anyone might face prison time in Engoron’s ruling.

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