Trump civil fraud damages verdict may not come until mid-February

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A verdict in the New York civil fraud trial against former President Donald Trump may not come until mid-February, a court spokesperson said in a statement.

“It’s looking like early to mid-February, as a rough estimate, and subject to modifications. But that’s the working plan now,” said Al Baker, a spokesman for the New York State Office of Court Administration. Judge Arthur Engoron will issue a written decision and no news conference will be held, Baker added.

Closing arguments in the three-month trial were delivered in court on Jan. 11, and Engoron, who has been overseeing the case, said he had aimed to issue a ruling by Jan. 31, although he noted that wasn’t a guarantee.

In early January, New York Attorney General Letitia James called for a $370 million fine against Trump and his companies and a lifetime ban on him and two of his former company executives from the real estate industry in the state. The attorney general also asked for five-year bans for Trump’s eldest sons, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, with the same conditions.

James had originally sought an estimated $250 million in damages from Trump and his business.

The former president has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing in the case, calling the lawsuit a partisan “witch hunt,” and has vowed to appeal the judge’s ruling.

The trial began in early October, with testimony in the case ending in December and closing arguments in January. Trump, who has won both the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire GOP presidential primary so far, attended part of the trial.

In a Dec. 18 ruling, Engoron said that he wasn’t convinced by the Trump team’s arguments that the financial statements weren’t inflated and that such valuations are subjective.

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