Former President Donald Trump will post a more than $5.5 million cash deposit as he appeals a verdict in favor of E. Jean Carroll for sexual abuse and defamation.
Senior U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan quickly approved the request by Trump’s attorney Joe Tacopina, who asked the court to allow his client to put down a sum of $5,550,000, representing 111% of the judgment.
Tacopina called that “consistent with the traditional security percentage of supersedeas bonds.”
Former federal prosecutor Mitchell Epner said that the posting of a bond like this is “standard operating procedure” during such an appeal.
“The bond allows the defendant to stay execution of the judgment during the pendency of the appeal,” said Epner, who is now a partner at the firm Rottenberg Lipman Rich PC. “The money is put up in a form where the plaintiff is guaranteed to collect if she wins the appeal. Absent Trump posting a bond or depositing the full judgment (plus interest) to the court, Carroll could collect her judgment 30 days from when it was entered. If she collected and Trump won on appeal, he would have to chase her for the money.”
Epner found it unusual, however, that a wealthy civil litigant like Trump would seek a cash deposit rather than a traditional bond.
“In my 25+ years as an attorney, I’ve never seen an appellant who had the money that couldn’t get a supersedeas bond,” he told Law&Crime.
Tacopina did not immediately respond to a text message asking why Trump opted for that alternative.
E. Jean Carroll’s attorney Roberta Kaplan, who agreed to it, didn’t immediately respond to a press inquiry, either.
“If the Judgment is reversed and set aside completely, then the sums originally deposited with the Court by Defendant, together with any interest earned on such funds less any fees, shall be paid to Defendant,” their stipulation states. “Collection by Defendant of the funds held by the Court may be accomplished by means of a motion or a stipulation and order, with notice served on the Clerk of this Court.”
In early May, a federal jury in New York quickly found that Trump sexually abused Carroll in the dressing room of a Bergdorf Goodman in the mid-1990s — and then defamed her when she stepped forward with her story decades later. Deliberations took fewer than three hours.
Other possible liabilities for Trump remain, whatever the outcome of the appeal. Carroll has a pending defamation case about comments that Trump made as president that she was not his “type.” That lawsuit stalled amid questions about whether Trump had immunity for statements he made while in office. The Department of Justice previously argued that he had, and the issue was extensively litigated, though never resolved. Carroll later amended that complaint to seek $10 million — and added Trump’s statements during his CNN town hall to her action.
A trial in that remaining case is slated for Jan. 15, 2024, unless it resolves or is dismissed before that time.
Read the stipulation here.
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Trump posts $5.5M cash deposit in E. Jean Carroll appeal
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