Federal judge denies Trump’s 4th attempt to stop E Jean Carroll lawsuit, calling appeal ‘frivolous’

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A federal judge has denied former President Trump’s fourth attempt to halt the defamation case leveled against him by writer E. Jean Carroll. 

In a 17-page opinion released Friday, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan called Trump’s latest motion to stay the case “frivolous” and said it was “yet another such attempt to delay unduly the resolution” of Carroll’s lawsuit. The judge said Trump’s lawyers have not made any argument different from points the court has rejected in their three previous attempts. 

“For the foregoing reasons, Mr. Trump’s motion for a stay pending appeal (Dkt 185) is denied. This Court certifies that the appeal itself is frivolous,” Kaplan wrote.  

JUDGE DISMISSES TRUMP COUNTERCLAIM IN E. JEAN CARROLL DEFAMATION CASE

Donald Trump

Former President Trump speaks during a campaign rally at Windham High School in Windham, New Hampshire. (Photo by JOSEPH PREZIOSO/AFP via Getty Images)

The defamation case is currently set for trial in January 2024. This is Carroll’s second lawsuit against Trump. 

In May, a jury awarded Carroll $5 million in damages in her first lawsuit after concluding that Trump sexually abused her in 1996 at a midtown Manhattan Bergdorf Goodman store and then defamed her last fall with comments he made about her and her claims. While the jury concluded that Trump was liable for sexually abusing Carroll, it ruled in Trump’s favor regarding her rape claim.

NEW YORK JURY FINDS DONALD TRUMP SEXUALLY ABUSED E JEAN CARROLL IN CIVIL SUIT

Carroll leaves NYC federal court

Writer E. Jean Carroll leaves a Manhattan courthouse on May 9, 2023 in New York City after a jury found former President Trump liable for sexually abusing her in a Manhattan department store in the 1990s. The jury awarded her $5 million in damages for her battery and defamation claims. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Trump has claimed as recently as July that he does not know Carroll and did not rape her. He went on to blast the Justice Department for not coming to his defense.

“The DOJ will not defend me in the E. Jean Carroll civil case, which is all part of the political Witch Hunt, lawyered up by a political operative who I just beat in another case, financed by a big political funder, and ‘judged’ by a Clinton appointee who truly hates ‘TRUMP.’ The statements that I made about Carroll are all true. I didn’t Rape her (I won that at trial) and other than for this case, I have NO IDEA WHO SHE IS, WHAT SHE LOOKS LIKE, OR ANYTHING ABOUT HER,” Trump wrote on social media July 12.

TRUMP VIDEO OF E JEAN CARROLL DEPOSITION RELEASED: ‘SHE WOULDN’T BE MY TYPE IN ANY WAY, SHAPE OR FORM’

E. Jean Carroll court sketch

In this courtroom sketch, E. Jean Carroll turns around and smiles at the jury as they are being polled after reading the verdict in a Manhattan federal court, Tuesday, May 9, 2023, in New York. Carroll testified that she was raped by former President Trump, giving details about the alleged attack in the mid-1990s. Trump stated that the attack never happened and has denied meeting her. He did not take the stand during the trial. (Elizabeth Williams via AP)

The case has dragged on for over three years as Trump has — so far unsuccessfully — made various arguments for why there can be no dispute over the facts, and that he is entitled to win as a matter of law. In December 2022, Trump for the first time argued that he has absolute presidential immunity for his 2019 statements about Carroll. However, the court rejected that argument, finding that the former president had waived his immunity defense by failing to raise it earlier in the case.  

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Trump appealed that decision and sought to delay the case pending resolution of his appeal, but Kaplan said his immunity defense was likely to fail on its merits and denied Trump’s request. 

Fox News’ Danielle Wallace and Anders Hagstrom contributed to this report. 

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