Trump and his attorneys rage over NY AG’s suggestions on how to satisfy civil fraud judgment


Donald Trump

FILE — Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally on March 16, 2024, in Vandalia, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jeff Dean, File)

Former President Donald Trump on Thursday twice pushed back against claims he could creatively satisfy his $464 million civil fraud liabilities in New York State while he appeals the judgment.

In a one-two attack — a court motion followed by a personal social media post — the 45th president railed against recent suggestions from New York Attorney General Letitia James’ office that the defense post bond “by dividing the bond amount among multiple sureties” or using the Trump Organization’s vast real estate holdings “as collateral.”

A letter motion sent to the New York State Appellate Division’s First Department by attorney Clifford S. Robert scathingly rebuked the ideas — saying some of them had already been broached in the defense’s gargantuan 4,919-page reply in support of a stay.

“As explained in Defendants’ Affirmations, those separate bonds would still require a total collateralization of cash or cash equivalents in excess of $557 million, regardless of how many sureties were involved,” Robert wrote in the Thursday court filing.

The defense attorney also had choice words for the Empire State’s proposed real estate solution.

“It would be completely illogical — and the definition of an unconstitutional Excessive Fine and a Taking — to require Defendants to sell properties at all, and especially in a ‘fire sale,’ in order to be able to appeal the lawless Supreme Court judgment, as that would cause harm that cannot be repaired once the Defendants do win, as is overwhelmingly likely, on appeal,” the defense motion continues.

Absent an eleventh-hour intervention by New York state appellate courts, the attorney general’s office can begin to execute the judgment on March 25 — if Trump cannot satisfy the full amount in cash or come up with a bond. James has signaled that she is likely to begin seizing the former president’s properties in that event.

On Monday, Trump’s attorney told the appeals court that securing such a bond, in any way, was a “practical impossibility.”

Trump and the other defendants are planning to appeal the judgment — likely at a basic level and in terms of the amount owed. Typically, a defendant in such a position would seek a bond from a private company to secure the amount while appeals are pursued in higher courts. But, the defendants say, they have had no luck coming to an agreement with a bond company — because the amount they owe is just too large for a private company to cover.

On Wednesday, New York State Senior Assistant Solicitor General Dennis Fan filed a nine-page reply offering the state’s proposed suggestions on how to secure the bond — while mainly arguing against Trump’s “extraordinary request to forego posting a full bond.”

In the state’s reply, Fan also suggested Trump could sell off some of his properties to satisfy either the bond or the full amount.

Trump’s attorney took particular exception to that idea.

“Perhaps worst of all, the Attorney General argues that Defendants should be forced to dispose of iconic, multi-billion-dollar real-estate holdings in a ‘fire sale,’” the Thursday court filing reads.

In a Truth Social post, Trump himself expressed typical umbrage about the case — while zeroing in on the notion of selling his assets.

“Even though I did nothing wrong, a Radical Left New York Judge, a true Trump Hater, Arthur Engoron (Are we allowed to speak about his Unconstitutional Gag Order?), picked a number out of THIN AIR, $355,000,000, plus interest (reminiscent of John Lovitz, ‘The Liar,’ on SNL when it was good), & wants me to bond it, which is not possible for bonding companies to do in such a high amount, before I can even Appeal,” the post reads. “That is CRAZY! If I sold assets, and then won the Appeal, the assets would be forever gone. Also, putting up money before an Appeal is VERY EXPENSIVE. When I win the Appeal, all of that money is gone, and I would have done nothing wrong.”

The attorney general’s office did offer one other would-be solution — having the New York Supreme Court itself hold the real estate.

While Trump did not personally engage with that suggestion, his attorney said it would be “impractical and unjust” and “functionally equivalent” to the monitor appointed by Justice Arthur Engoron.

Notably, on Thursday afternoon, that monitor, former judge Barbara Jones, was granted “enhanced” power over the Trump Organization’s finances in a five-page order issued by the trial court.

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