Judge imposes gag order on Trump: what you need to know

2RYYHYY Former President Donald Trump speaks to press before the start of civil fraud trial brought by NYS Attorney General Letitia James at NYS court in New York on October 2, 2023

Photo: Alamy

President Trump’s freedom to speak out against court officials overseeing his business fraud trial in Manhattan has been eliminated after the judge overseeing the case imposed a gag order against the 45th president.

Judge Arthur Engoron, a registered Democrat, issued a partial gag order against President Trump and other parties from the case over making supposed “personal attacks” towards a member of the court staff, the New York Post reported.

Although he did not specifically name Trump, Engoron addressed the court, saying that “one of the defendants” posted a “disparaging untrue and personally identifying post” about the judge’s principal law clerk Alison Greenfield, according to New York Post.

Trump, on the second day of his civil fraud case in New York, reportedly posted a now-deleted picture to his Truth Social of Greenfield standing alongside the Sen. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., calling her “Schumer’s girlfriend.”

“Schumer’s girlfriend, Alison R. Greenfield, is running this case against me,” Trump wrote on Tuesday. “How disgraceful! This case should be dismissed immediately!”

Shortly thereafter, the Trump campaign sent an email to supporters criticizing the judge over his alleged past anti-Trump statements, The Hill reported, citing numerous articles highlighting examples of the judge’s biases.

Among the articles, Trump cited a report from the Daily Wire, of which they claimed Engoron had donated to Democrats since the 1990s, including most recently in 2018 to Manhattan Democrats.

Trump cited another article from the Gateway Pundit, where they claimed the judge said that New York Attorney General Letitia James had every right to go after the 45th president if “he’s just a bad guy.”

Following President Trump’s posts made during the court’s lunch break, the judge issued the gag order after the session had reconvened.

“This morning one of the defendants posted on (a) social media account a disparaging untrue and personally identifying post about a member of my staff,” stated Engoron, according to Politico. “Although I have since ordered the post deleted and apparently it was, it was also emailed out to millions of other recipients.”

The judge then threatened dissidents with “serious” legal ramifications for speaking publicly about court staff members, though he did not explicitly state the consequences.

“Consider this statement an order forbidding all parties from posting emailing or speaking publicly about any members of my staff,” said the judge. “Failure to abide by this…will result in serious sanctions.”

Engoron gave these remarks following a 45-minute closed-door meeting in the court, the New York Post reported, where media representatives were reportedly not allowed.

President Trump’s gag order comes amid New York Democrat Attorney General Letitia James’s investigation into his past business practices before serving in office.

James has sought $250 million in penalties, the Associated Press reported, accusing the Trump Organization of inflating the value of their assets to receive better loan terms and insurance costs.

Engoron last week sided with the state attorney general’s suit, saying the organization was liable for fraud, per RSBN. He also rebuked claims that Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home was worth $1 billion, instead valuing the resort at only $18 million.

Five of Trump’s lawyers were also ordered to pay $7,500 for making what the judge deemed “frivolous arguments.”

With Engoron’s leftward political leanings and disdain for Trump, many doubt whether he will give impartial judgment or a fair trial to the 45th president.

Even if a jury were to find Donald Trump “not guilty” of all charges, the judge has hinted previously that he could overrule their decision should he feel like doing so.

Human Events Senior Editor Jack Posobiec posted a video to X, formerly known as Twitter, of Engoron’s comments from a 2015 lecture to students at City University of New York, where he claimed he could overturn a jury based on his own personal emotions.

“Juries get it wrong a lot, that’s my own opinion,” Engoron told the students.

“I have a tool to deal with that. It’s called judgment notwithstanding the verdict,” the judge declared. “I can say, ‘there is no possible way that a reasonable jury would’ve reached that conclusion.'”

The judge also drew massive criticism for flashing smiles at courtroom cameras during the trial on Monday, as Trump and his legal team remained stoic.

Trump later told reporters, “We’re going to be here for MONTHS with a judge that’s already made up his mind.”

He continued, “It’s ridiculous. He’s a Democrat judge. He’s an operative, and it’s ridiculous.”

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