On Friday, January 26, a New York jury ordered Donald Trump to pay a whopping $83.3 million, 16.3 million in compensatory damages and 65 million in punitive damages, to journalist E Jean Carroll after the former’s crushing defeat in a defamation case. Ever since Carroll levelled accusations against the former American president, the latter has left no stone unturned to launch a slew of attacks against the columnist on social media.
In May 2023, E Jean Carroll was awarded $5 million after the ex-President was convicted of defaming the columnist and sexually abusing her in a Manhattan department store in 1996. However, the former president has continued to plead not guilty and denied all charges calling them an orchestration by the Biden administration.
It took less than three hours for the jury, consisting of seven men and two women, to deliver the final verdict on Friday afternoon regarding the amount to be awarded to E Jean Carroll. They were not given jurisdiction to decide on the credibility of the allegations/the incident.
Donald Trump’s Never-Ending Legal Saga
The Republican leader condemned the latest verdict, calling it “absolutely ridiculous” and has decided to appeal the latest ruling alongside the May 2023 award. He further called the entire debacle “a witch hunt”, criticizing the use of the legal system as “political weapon”.
Donald Trump had left the Manhattan Federal courthouse during Carroll’s attorney’s closing arguments. Although he returned during the closing arguments of his attorney, he left before the reading of the final verdict.
He is also facing four criminal cases for a total of 91 felony counts including accusation of overturning 2020 elections, mismanagement of classified documents and bribing a porn star. However, he considers the consecutive legal battles a testament to the fact that the legal system is essentially functioning as political weapon.
AP News stated that Trump’s attorney, Alina Habba has accused opponents of suing him “in states where they know they will get juries like this.” “It will not deter us. We will keep fighting. And, I assure you, we didn’t win today, but we will win,” she said.
Ahead of the Colorado primary on Super Tuesday, March 5, the US Supreme Court is set to hear the the former US President’s Colorado appeal on February 8 after he was barred from contesting in the state’s primary ballot due to his involvement in the January 6 riots.
Donald Trump and Elizabeth Jean Carroll’s 1996 Encounter
The former Elle columnist has claimed that the politician had “forced himself on her” after pining her against a dressing room wall at Bergdorf Goodman’s Fifth Avenue store back in 1996.
In a statement following the ruling she said, “This is a great victory for every woman who stands up when she’s been knocked down, and a huge defeat for every bully who has tried to keep a woman down.”