Former United States President Donald Trump yesterday took the stand in his defence in his fraud trial and there was a showdown in the courtroom.
Using the witness stand at his civil fraud trial as an opportunity to defend his wealth and take aim at a case that threatens his real estate empire, a defiant Donald Trump sparred with a New York judge and blasted the state attorney general who filed suit against him.
During his eagerly expected testimony regarding property assessments and financial accounts, Trump made personal shots at two people: New York Attorney General Letitia James, whom he called a “political hack,” and state Judge Arthur Engoron, whom he claimed was prejudiced against him.
“I’m worth billions of dollars more than the financial statements,” he boasted proudly of his real estate company, and he refuted allegations that he had misled banks and insurers. Judge Engoron played a crucial role, although Donald Trump acted aggressively while testifying. He addressed the judge directly, which resulted in some tense moments, and he received criticism for voicing general complaints that had little bearing on the issue at hand.
The judge, who will ultimately choose whether or not to impose fines, seemed displeased by everything. At some point in the trial, the judge could be heard ‘beseeching’ the former president’s lawyers to ‘control him’ as the defiant former US president kept lashing at him.
Can you control your client? This is not a political rally, this is a courtroom. I beseech you to control him. If you can’t, I will.the judge said.
In addition to imposing a multi-million dollar punishment, Judge Engoron will eventually determine the trial’s outcome and may also deny the defendants permission to conduct business in New York. At one point in court, Mr. Trump remarked, “I’m sure the judge will rule against me because he always rules against me.”
“You can attack me in whichever way you want, but please answer the questions,” Judge Engoron retaliated. Afterwards, he called the former president a “broken record.”
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The former president claimed, in line with his two sons’ testimony from last week, that the Trump Organization’s accountants were in charge of the financial reports.