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New York AG Letitia James asks judge to void Trump's bond in his civil fraud verdict

The filing comes ahead of a hearing on Monday on the matter.
Letitia James
New York Attorney General Letitia James on Friday, Feb. 16, 2024, in New York.Bebeto Matthews / AP file

New York Attorney General Letitia James on Friday asked that a judge void former President Donald Trump's bond in his civil fraud case, questioning whether the company that issued it has the funds to back it up.

In a 26-page filing ahead of a pre-scheduled hearing on Monday, James expressed concern about whether Knight Specialty Insurance Company could secure the $175 million bond. She also argued that the collateral put up by the former president should be under the full control of the company.

One of James' concerns about KSIC is that the insurer "is not authorized to write business in New York and thus not regulated by the state’s insurance department." She added that the company "had never before written a surety bond in New York or in the prior two years in any other jurisdiction, and has a total policyholder surplus of just $138 million."

James also criticized Trump's team's apparent hold on the collateral put up to back the bond.

"KSIC does not now have an exclusive right to control the account and will not obtain such control unless and until it exercises a right to do so on two days’ notice," she wrote.

Neither Trump's lawyers nor KSIC immediately responded to a request for comment.

Trump attorney Alina Habba previously said when the former president's bond was posted that he "looks forward to vindicating his rights on appeal and overturning this unjust verdict."

The new filing comes after James filed a notice earlier this month seeking more information about the former president's bond. In that filing, she asked that Trump's lawyers or the insurance company "file a motion to justify the surety bond" or provide additional information about the collateral put up by Trump within 10 days.

The bond for Trump and his co-defendants was reduced by a state appeals court to $175 million in March, down from $464 million. Trump had been liable for $454 million, the vast majority of the original sum. The former president has repeatedly slammed the case against him and denied any wrongdoing.

James’ filing comes as Trump was in the courtroom for his New York criminal hush money case where he faces 34 counts of falsifying business records and as a state appeals court judge rejected Trump’s request for a emergency stay of the trial. A jury has been seated in that case and arguments are set to begin on Monday. Trump has pleaded not guilty to all counts.