Trump Racks Up scorn Of Court Fines As Appellate Court Puts Kibosh On Emergency stop
Trump Racks Up Contempt Of Court Fines As Appellate Court Puts Kibosh On Emergency Stay
(Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Third time’s not a charm for Donald Trump, who failed again to purge the contempt charges pending against him in New York’s Supreme Court.
Last Monday, Justice Arthur Engoron agreed with the New York Attorney General (OAG) that the former president had failed to comply with his discovery order and was in contempt of court. That is a thing that sometimes happens when you agree to produce the requested documents in both a court ordered stipulation and in subsequent correspondence, but instead barf up 16 pages of blather restating the objections already rejected by the court.
“Mr. Trump, I know you take your business seriously, and I take mine seriously. I hereby hold you in civil contempt,” the judge said Monday, following up with a written order holding that the respondent had “willfully disobeyed a lawful order of this court” and imposing a $10,000 daily fine.
On Wednesday, the trial court refused to purge the contempt, even after his attorney Alina Habba docketed a slightly more specific set of affidavits attesting to her client’s compliance, going so far as to get Trump to slap his trademark EKG signature on a couple paragraphs saying he didn’t have any responsive materials.
“[T]he affirmations submitted by counsel also fail to affirm that the subject electronic devices were imaged and searched and with what search terms,” he wrote in an order refusing to purge the contempt in which he referred to Trump’s own attestation as “insufficient.”
Habba had already appealed the contempt ruling to the Appellate Division, First Department, even before she ran to Law & Crime to complain that “The tactics employed by this Court, including the dramatic pounding of the gavel, the statements directed to our client from the bench, and direct comments to the press have reduced this hearing to the likes of a public spectacle.”
But to no avail. Yesterday the First Department rejected the emergency stay application, referring the matter to the full bench for determination, in an order posted online by Law & Crime.
So Trump can continue to write those $10,000 daily checks, which, as ATL columnist Jonathan Wolf points out, is chump change for a billionaire. But still, it’s not a great look for a guy who claims to be “perhaps the most innocent man anywhere in the history of the United States.”
New York Appellate Court Rejects Donald Trump’s Request to Stay His Contempt Order [Law & Crime]
Elizabeth Dye lives in Baltimore where she writes about law and politics.