Donald Trump after million-dollar verdict: cash reserves threatened?

The New York verdict goes to the core of Trump’s identity as a businessman: the former US president must pay hundreds of millions of dollars for fraud. Trump’s sons are also affected.

After a harsh verdict in the fraud trial against Donald Trump, the former US president must raise more than $350 million within 30 days. The New York judge’s ruling, which also attacks Trump’s identity as a successful businessman, also requires that the 77-year-old real estate entrepreneur not be allowed to run a company in New York state for three years. His sons Eric and Donald Jr. will each have to pay a fine of around four million dollars and will not be allowed to run a company in New York state for two years, according to a 92-page order that Judge Arthur Engoron published on Friday.

“Their complete lack of remorse and insight is almost pathological,” Judge Engoron wrote, referring to Trump and his sons in the order. The New York Times commented that the verdict was a “devastating defeat” for Trump. The fine of $355 million (329 million euros) could “wipe out his entire cash supply.”

Donald Trump: Apparently there is no threat of bankruptcy

Trump’s lawyers announced that they would appeal. Nevertheless, according to consistent media reports, the ex-president must either deposit the money or some kind of security through a third company within 30 days. Plus interest, the total amount is around $450 million, according to the New York Times. But neither he nor his “Trump Organization” is threatened with bankruptcy.

The order was a “complete and total hypocrisy” and the whole process was part of a “witch hunt” against him ordered by his successor Joe Biden, the Republican complained. Political beliefs and the venue of the trial, not the facts, determined the outcome of the trial, criticized his son Donald Trump Jr. on the online platform X, formerly Twitter.

Attorney General celebrates verdict as “huge victory”

The metropolis of New York is considered liberal and usually votes predominantly Democratic.
New York Attorney General Letitia James hailed the decision as a “huge victory.” “Today justice has been delivered. This is a huge victory for this state, for this country and for everyone who believes we must all play by the same rules – including former presidents.” James had originally called for an even harsher punishment. Among other things, she wanted to ban Trump from running a company in New York state for life.

The civil case was about the future of the 77-year-old’s corporate empire. The public prosecutor’s office accused Trump, his sons and employees of manipulating the value of the “Trump Organization” for years in order to get cheaper loans and insurance contracts. Judge Engoron had already confirmed this before the trial. The proceedings, which began in October and ended in mid-January, were primarily about determining possible penalties and other charges. During the trial, both Trump himself and several of his children were questioned.

First criminal trial is imminent

There was no threat of a prison sentence or direct impact on Trump’s bid for the presidency in the civil case. However, the ex-president is currently involved in a number of other proceedings. Only on Thursday was the start of a trial in connection with hush money payments to a porn star on March 25th confirmed by a judge. It would be the first criminal trial of a former president in US history. Three further criminal trials are being prepared, including on allegations of attempted election manipulation. Civil lawsuits are also ongoing.

In late January, a jury awarded 80-year-old author E. Jean Carroll $83.3 million in damages in a libel trial. Trump’s lawyers had also announced their intention to appeal this case. Before the various revisions, however, it also means for Trump: For him it is about more than half a billion euros.

The 77-year-old Trump is considered the Republicans’ most promising candidate in the upcoming presidential election in November. He has often used his trials as election campaign events, which has already brought him into disputes with several judges.