Former President Donald Trump stated on Sunday (Dec 10) via social media that he won’t testify for his civil fraud trial in New York for the second instance, citing having “nothing more to say.” Trump, who is 77 years old and a frontrunner for the 2024 presidential elections as a Republican, was anticipated to appear on the stand again this week.
Trump made the statement on his social media platform, Truth Social adding that he has “already testified to everything” in the ongoing trial in the case brought by New York state’s attorney general, one of the many legal woes that the former president is facing amid his White House bid.
He added, “I have already testified to everything & have nothing more to say other than that this is a complete and total election interference.”
New York Attorney General Letitia James had accused the former president of inflating his assets and net worth to obtain favourable bank loans and lower insurance premiums.
Trump was expected to take the stand on Monday (Dec 11) in a case involving his eldest sons Don Jr and Eric and other Trump Organization executives.
Trump lawyer Christopher Kise said there was “really nothing more to say to a judge who has imposed an unconstitutional gag order and thus far appears to have ignored President Trump’s testimony and that of everyone else involved in the complex financial transactions at issue in the case”.
New York Judge Arthur Engoron had first imposed a gag order against Trump in October after he shared a photo on social media of the judge’s principal law clerk posing with Senate Majority leader and Democrat Chuck Schumer, and falsely called her Schumer’s “girlfriend.”
Since the beginning of the trial, the Republican frontrunner has denounced the proceedings as a partisan “witch hunt”. During his first appearance, in November, Trump often avoided direct answers and spent much of his time complaining of unfair treatment.
At one point, a visibly angry Engoron told Trump’s lawyer, Kise, to “control your client”.
Engoron, whom Trump has branded “hostile” and a “political hack”, has already ruled that Trump and his sons manipulated financial statements to dupe banks and insurers, while the trial is currently focused on the damages.