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Trump fraud trial: Court adjourns after testimonies this week from Eric and Don. Jr.

Former President Donald Trump and his daughter Ivanka Trump are expected to testify next week.

What to know about the Trumps’ testimony in the civil fraud trial

  • Eric Trump testified again today in the $250 million civil fraud trial against the Trump family and their company.
  • His testimony began yesterday, at times becoming heated. Eric Trump, the youngest of the former president's two adult sons, acknowledged he was aware of the Trump Organization's statements of financial condition as far back as 2013 after repeatedly denying knowledge of them.
  • New York Attorney General Letitia James’ office has argued that Trump’s children participated in a scheme to falsely inflate their company's assets to secure more favorable loans and insurance policies.
  • The former president and his daughter Ivanka Trump are expected to take the stand next week. His oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., also testified this week.

Trump appears to rip fraud trial in social media post

Alana Satlin

After his two adult sons finished testifying in the civil fraud trial this week, Trump ranted on his Truth Social platform about the investigations into him and his family.


In a second post, he wrote, "ELECTION INTERFERENCE!!!" He has repeatedly accused AG James of interfering with his presidential campaign by bringing the case against him.

AG James leaves court

Andy Weir

AG James has also departed the courthouse, according to her office. She did not stop to take questions.

Eric Trump says he and his siblings are 'collateral damage'


Brittany Kubicko

Andy Weir

Brittany Kubicko, Andy Weir and Dareh Gregorian

Eric Trump repeatedly ripped state Attorney General Letitia James to reporters after he finished his testimony, and complained that he, his brother Don Jr. and sister Ivanka are "collateral damage" in the AG's "witch hunt."

"What New York state’s trying to do with my father is truly awful. I haven’t seen anything like it," he said outside the courtroom.

"They’ve dragged Don and I and Ivanka to it as collateral damage. They only want our names in this thing because it sensationalizes the case. We’ve done absolutely nothing wrong. We have a better company then they could ever imagine. And this is a big charade that’s a huge waste of taxpayer money, and it’s the very reason everybody’s moving out of New York state," he added.

The judge has already found that Donald Trump and his two sons engaged in "persistent fraud" with exaggerated valuations of their assets in order to get more favorable bank loans.

The former president is scheduled to testify Monday. "I know he’s very fired up to be here and he thinks this is one of the most incredible injustices he’s ever seen, and it truly is," Eric Trump said. 

He also took a line from his father's playbook outside the courthouse later, telling reporters the case is "a political witch hunt."

Trial ends for the day after judge again spars with Trump lawyers

The day ended the way it began, with another testy exchange between the judge and Trump's lawyers over the judge's law clerk.

Judge Engoron told Kise, a lawyer for Trump, that he would continue to get notes and advice from his law clerk, saying, “I am allowed to do that.”

“I don’t want any further comments about my staff,” he added.

Engoron's law clerk has been the subject of complaints from Trump's team, to the judge's annoyance.

Kise essentially contended that he needs to speak up if he sees something he considers objectionable because he needs to make a record in case of an appeal. The judge said he could appeal, but it would be “useless and meaningless.”

"You have made speeches through the trial," he said. "What more of a record do you want?"

Kevin Wallace, of the AG's office, called the defense's focus on the clerk a "sideshow" that's meant to disrupt the trial.

Court will be back in session Monday with the next witness — former President Donald Trump.

Eric Trump testimony ends with questions about former CFO

The AG's office wrapped up Eric Trump's testimony with questions about former Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg's $2 million severance agreement.

Eric Trump said he was the person who negotiated the agreement in January.  "I was the person who did this, signed this. I negotiated," Trump said. Asked if his father signed off on the deal, he said, "No, he did not."

He was asked about language in the agreement barring Weisselberg from disparaging the company, and from cooperating "in any way" against the company "except for acts of testimony." Eric Trump characterized the agreement as "pretty boilerplate language."

Weisselberg was put in charge of the company along with Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr. after Donald Trump went to the White House in 2017. He was later removed from his post as trustee after he was indicted on tax fraud charges. He pleaded guilty in the case last year and served around three months in jail.

He testified against the company in a criminal trial last year.

The defense did not cross-examine Eric Trump or Donald Trump Jr. Both are expected to be called back as witnesses for the defense when its case begins.

Eric Trump back on the stand, and testy

Eric Trump is now back on the witness stand for his second day of testimony, and quickly started mixing it up with his questioner, Andrew Amer of the attorney general's office.

Asked about a 2021 video call he was on relating to information having to do with the AG's investigation, he replied, "I don’t recall a specific call."

"I have thousands of calls a day," he said.

Asked about a 2013 email involving joining a different call, Eric Trump, who seems more fidgety and nervous on the stand than he did yesterday, said sarcastically, "Yes, I asked him to join. I am very diligent. I am very proud of myself."

Asked if he was aware that the call was related to his father's financial statements — documents at the heart of the AG's case — he said "yes."

Trump lawyer accuses judge, clerk of bias

Continuing to complain about the judge's clerk, Trump lawyer Kise pointed to stories in right wing news outlets alleging that the judge and his clerk have made political donations to Democrats.

One of the stories alleges that the clerk made donations in excess of legal limits for court staff in violation of court rules, and that the judge was notified and did nothing about it. Kise said he had not investigated the allegations in the article, but they'd be concerning if true and could potentially be grounds for a mistrial.

The judge said that "this idea that somebody notified me is absolutely untrue," and while he was not familiar with the story, there are windows of time when judicial candidates are allowed to spend money on campaign activities. Engoron was elected to the bench, and his law clerk ran an unsuccessful campaign for a judgeship.

"This allegation is untrue. It’s a shame we have descended to this level," the judge said.

Judge, Trump lawyers continue to spar over his law clerk

Court picked up this morning where it left off yesterday, with Engoron arguing with Trump's lawyers about the role of his law clerk.

The judge pushed back on the Trump team's argument that he's too "intertwined" with his clerk, who passed him notes and sometimes whispered to him during testimony. Engoron said he spoke to another judge who had a similar relationship with a law clerk, and the clerk's role is far from unprecedented, as Trump's lawyers have claimed.

"I have the absolute right to get advice from my law clerk. I am not showing bias" by listening to her, the judge said, and "she doesn’t get up here and tell me how to rule."

Trump lawyer Chris Kise responded, “Yes, as a judge you are entitled to receive advice. But if you are receiving advice in a way that is indicative of bias, we have to make a record" of it. "The rulings are frequently, if not inordinately, against us on every major issue,” Kise complained.

The judge disagreed, and said his rulings have been "down the middle." Andrew Amer of the AG's office said the "notion of bias based on number of notes passed is completely frivolous," as is the notion that the judge is biased because he ruled against the defense.

Here's what Trump's lawyer said yesterday that angered Judge Engoron

Yesterday, a dispute about the propriety of asking Eric Trump about his October 2020 deposition during the New York attorney general’s investigation went sideways when Trump lawyer Chris Kise made an errant comment about the judge’s principal law clerk.

Most in the courtroom did not catch exactly what he said, however. Thanks to the transcript, however, we now know that at the tail end of listing his objections, Kise noted: “I’ll wait again to get the note that you have from Ms. [name of clerk]. You may have a question for me. Maybe it is about dinner.”

Especially in light of Trump’s social media post about that law clerk — which falsely suggested she was in a romantic relationship with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and triggered the gag order now in place — the insinuation about their having dinner together is what apparently provoked Judge Engoron.

Secret Service agent reviews courtroom ahead of Trump's testimony

Adam Reiss

There's a Secret Service agent in the courtroom getting a lay of the land for Monday’s visit by former President Donald Trump.

AG James arrives at court

Andy Weir

AG James just arrived. She did not answer questions.

Eric Trump arrives at courthouse

Andy Weir

Eric Trump just arrived at court, where he is expected to continue his testimony this morning. While did not answer questions as he entered, he did say he would speak later today.

Eric Trump arrives at New York State Supreme Court on Nov. 3, 2023.
Eric Trump arrives at New York State Supreme Court on Friday.Michael M. Santiago / Getty Images

Here's what to expect at trial today

Eric Trump, who has worked as an executive vice president at the Trump Organization, is set to continue his testimony this morning.

He will be under direct examination. Yesterday, attorneys for the former president declined to cross-examine Donald Trump Jr.

New York Attorney General Letitia James’ office has argued that former President Donald Trump’s children were “aware of, and knowingly participated in” a yearslong scheme to falsely inflate the Trump Organization's assets in order to secure more favorable loans and insurance policies than warranted.

Trump and his adult children who are testifying in the trial have denied wrongdoing.

Highlights from the trial yesterday

Trump’s lawyers declined to cross-examine Donald Trump Jr., who testified for a second day on Thursday and said he didn’t recall the details of several documents shown to him in court. He added that he relied on the Trump Organization’s accountants and accounting firm, Mazars USA.

During questioning from the AG's office in the afternoon, Eric Trump, the former president's second oldest son, described himself as a "construction guy," saying repeatedly: “I pour concrete. I operate properties. I don’t focus on appraisals.” At one point, he did acknowledge an awareness of his father's financial statements dating as far back as 2013.

Before adjourning for the day, Judge Arthur Engoron got into a heated exchange with Trump lawyer Chris Kise, after the attorney made a reference to the judge’s law clerk. Engoron said, There is a sense of misogyny" in how Kise referred to the clerk, who is a woman.