Hello and welcome to the details of Trump accuser set to tell jurors how ex-president harmed her reputation and now with the details
Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - E. Jean Carroll watches as her lawyer Shawn Crowley opens in the second civil trial after Carroll accused former U.S. President Donald Trump of raping her decades ago, at Manhattan Federal Court in New York City, January 16, 2024 in this courtroom sketch. — Reuters pic
NEW YORK, Jan 17 — The writer E. Jean Carroll is expected to tell her side of the story today, at a trial to determine how much Donald Trump should pay for damaging her reputation in 2019 by denying he raped her a quarter century earlier.
Carroll, 80, will testify against Trump in federal court in Manhattan, in her second civil trial against the former US president.
Last May, a different jury ordered Trump to pay Carroll US$5 million (RM23.6 million), finding that he had sexually abused her in a Bergdorf Goodman department store dressing room, and defamed her in 2022 by denying that anything happened.
The latest trial has become a focal point of Trump’s 2024 White House run, with Trump using his Truth Social platform yesterday to unleash criticism of Carroll and the trial judge even after jury selection and the trial began.
Trump, 77, has often used his legal woes to rally supporters and raise funds as he seeks the Republican presidential nomination, calling the cases part of a political plot.
Carroll’s latest case concerns statements Trump made in June 2019, when he was in the White House, claiming he did not know her and that she branded him a rapist to boost sales of her then-new memoir.
The former Elle magazine advice columnist said his denials and the fallout led her to fear for her safety and destroyed a professional reputation she had spent decades building.
“He used the world’s biggest microphone to attack Ms. Carroll, to humiliate her, and to destroy her reputation,” Shawn Crowley, a lawyer for Carroll, said in her opening statement. “It’s time to make him pay, dearly, for what he has done.”
Carroll is seeking at least US$10 million in damages.
Trump’s legal team countered that Carroll invited criticism by accusing Trump of sexual misconduct and suffered harm only from “mean things” that people posted on social media.
They also said Carroll has basked in adulation from supporters and attention from media outlets, even parlaying her case into working on a novel with Trump’s niece Mary Trump, who sued her uncle over her inheritance.
“Regardless of a few mean tweets, Ms. Carroll is now more famous than she has ever been in her life, and loved and respected by many, which was her goal,” Trump’s lawyer Alina Habba said in her opening statement.
Trump, who did not attend Carroll’s first trial, sat through yesterday’s jury selection, but skipped opening statements for a New Hampshire campaign stop.
The trial is expected to last three to five days.
Trump has said he wants to testify. His lawyers have said he plans to attend Thursday’s funeral for the mother of his wife Melania Trump, meaning any testimony by Trump may occur next week. The court does not sit on Friday.
Trump has separately pleaded not guilty in four criminal cases, including two claiming he tried to overturn his 2020 election loss to Democrat Joe Biden. — Reuters
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