Ex-President Donald Trump arrives at defamation trial over columnist’s sex abuse claims

After a political victory in the Iowa caucus, former President Donald Trump arrived at court Tuesday to face another legal challenge: a trial to determine how much more he owes the writer E. Jean Carroll for denying that he sexually assaulted her in the 1990s and accusing her of lying about her claims.

Jury selection is beginning at a federal court in Manhattan where Trump arrived in a motorcade shortly before 9 a.m., entering the building through a special entrance not usually used by the public. Opening arguments could take place by afternoon in what is essentially a second penalty phase of a legal fight Carroll has already won.

In May, a different jury awarded Carroll $5 million after concluding that Trump sexually abused her in a department store dressing room in spring 1996, then defamed her in 2022 by claiming she made it up after she revealed it publicly in a 2019 memoir. The jury said Carroll hadn’t proven that Trump raped her.

Trump is appealing and hasn’t paid any of that award.

One issue that wasn’t decided in that first trial was how much Trump owed for comments he made about Carroll while he was still president.

Determining that dollar amount will be the new jury’s only job.

  • January 16, 2024
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