Trump ordered to pay $83.3M for defamation against E. Jean Carroll

Former US President and 2024 candidate Donald Trump has been ordered by a New York jury to pay $83.3 million in compensation to the writer E. Jean Carroll, whom he was found to have sexually assaulted and defamed

Former US president and 2024 candidate Donald Trump was ordered to pay, by a jury in New York, $83.3 million to compensate the writer E. Jean Carroll, whom he was found to have sexually assaulted and defamed.

This civil order exceeds considerably the 10 million in damages for defamation that Carroll had sought. The jury deliberated for just under three hours before reaching their decision.

Immediately following the verdict, Trump strongly criticised it, deeming it "ridiculous" and pledging to file an appeal.

Trump had a presence in the courtroom, leaving at one point but later returning for closing arguments. However, he was absent when the compensatory and punitive damages were announced by a court clerk.

Carroll, in response to the outcome, declared it a significant triumph for women who stand up against adversity and a substantial setback for bullies attempting to suppress women.

Judge Lewis Kaplan commended the jury for their attentiveness after the verdict was delivered.

The financial award consisted of $65 million in punitive damages due to the jury's determination that Trump acted maliciously in his public comments about Carroll.

Additionally, $7.3 million was awarded in compensatory damages, along with $11 million for a reputational repair program.

Legal expert Carl Tobias from the University of Richmond School of Law anticipated the outcome, attributing it in part to Trump's behavior during the trial, which he believed could have alienated the jury.

Tobias also expressed doubt about Trump's chances on appeal, citing the high regard the appeal judges hold for Judge Kaplan's expertise.

In a separate federal civil case in New York, a jury previously found Trump liable for sexually assaulting Carroll.

Trump, utilising his Truth Social platform, launched a barrage of insulting messages targeting Carroll, the trial, and the judge. His lawyer, Alina Habba, asserted that they would promptly file an appeal, expressing pride in standing with Trump.

Trump briefly testified during the trial, vehemently denying any instructions to harm Carroll through his statements. Judge Kaplan restricted Trump to three yes-or-no questions during his testimony to prevent him from disparaging the court or Carroll publicly.

The former president, who was not mandated to attend the trial, leveraged the case to fuel media coverage and advance his narrative of victimization as he campaigned for a potential return to the White House.

Apart from this case, Trump faces multiple criminal charges, including alleged attempts to overturn the 2020 election results and a civil business fraud case.

Habba's attempt to have the case dismissed on the grounds that threatening messages began on social media before Trump's 2019 comments was denied.

During the trial, jurors were presented with Trump's deposition from October 2022, where he confused Carroll with his former wife Marla Maples, potentially casting doubt on his claim that Carroll was not his "type."

In a previous federal jury decision last year, Trump was found liable for sexually assaulting Carroll in 1996 and defaming her in 2022, labeling her a "complete con job."

While in court, Trump also campaigned for the New Hampshire primary, securing a decisive victory over his sole remaining rival, Nikki Haley, as he aims to become the Republican candidate in the upcoming November election against Joe Biden.