Donald Trump
Former U.S. President Donald Trump sits at the defense table with his lawyers in a Manhattan courtroom during his arraignment on April 4, 2023, in New York City.
(Photo: Seth Wenig/pool/via Getty Images)

Trump Fined $355 Million in New York Civil Fraud Case

A New York judge wrote the ex-president and his organization showed a "complete lack of contrition and remorse," bordering on "pathological."

Noting that Donald Trump and his real estate company "are incapable of admitting the error of their ways," New York State Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron on Friday ordered Trump and his associates to pay $364 million in fines and barred the former U.S. president from "serving as an officer or director of any New York corporation or other legal entity in New York for a period of three years."

Trump and his company are responsible for $355 million; his adult sons, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, owe $4 million each; and longtime executive Allen Weisselberg was fined $1 million.

The judgment comes weeks after Trump was ordered to pay $83.3 million for defaming writer E. Jean Carroll. A jury also found last year that Trump was liable for sexually abusing her in 1996.

The former president and the Trump Organization, whose top executives include his sons, were accused by New York Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat, of "repeated and persistent fraud," including falsifying financial statements by as much as $2.2 billion.

In his ruling, Engoron took issue with Trump's "refusal to admit error," and quoted 18th-century English poet Alexander Pope: "To err is human, to forgive is divine."

"Defendants are apparently of a different mind," wrote the judge. "Their complete lack of contrition and remorse borders on pathological."

Susanne Craig, an investigative journalist at The New York Times who has covered Trump's finances and legal cases, told MSNBC the ruling is a "massive, seismic decision today for" the president and his company.

"With Donald Trump, I always think the language he speaks is money and this is a lot of money," said Craig. "We don't really know how much cash he has on hand. At one point he said he had $400 million and there's documents that have been filed with the court that said he could have maybe had in that range at some point, we don't know."

"To even say it's a body blow may be an understatement," said Craig.

James called the ruling "a massive victory."

Trump will have to pay "over $450 million in disgorgement and interest," the attorney general noted.

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