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Donald Trump Gagged Again in New York Civil Case

A New York appeals court on Thursday reinstated a gag order against former President Donald Trump, preventing him from talking about court staff involved in the State of New York’s civil case alleging business fraud against him and his eldest sons.

In an order Thursday, the First Judicial Department of the Appellate Division for the Supreme Court of New York vacated an interim relief that blocked Justice Arthur Engoron’s initial gag on Trump, prohibiting him from making public statements about his law clerk, Allison Greenfield. Four justices issued the order on Thursday, including presiding Justice Sallie Manzanet-Daniels and Associate Justices Ellen Gesmer, Saliann Scarpulla, and Llinét M. Rosado.

“State court officials had argued the gag order was necessary because of the ‘deluge’ of threats directed at the clerk after Trump had blasted her on social media,” NBC News’s Asam Reiss and Dareh Gregorian noted Thursday.

Engoron’s order came on October 3 after Trump had posted a screenshot of a Twitter post showing Greenfield next to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY). Trump, in a Truth Social post, called her “Schumer’s girlfriend” and suggested she was “running this case against me.”

He also declared the case should promptly be dismissed.

Trump was twice called to the witness stand on suspicions of violating the order, and both times, Engoron found him to have breached it, fining him a total of $15,000.

On November 16, the First Department of New York’s Appellate Division lifted the gag order preventing Trump from talking publicly about Engoron’s court staff. That was the order reversed on Thursday.

Upon the first gag order, Breitbart News Washington Bureau Chief Matthew Boyle published a bombshell report on November 3 detailing that Greenfield “appears to have violated judicial rules preventing officers of the court from making excessive political donations.”

Boyle pointed out that “in 2022 alone, Greenfield gave thousands of dollars” in political donations that apparently exceeded a $500 threshold for court officials in aggregate donations for a calendar year.

Engoron seemed to have been advised of the violations, which were laid out in a complaint filed to his court by a third party, Boyle noted:

…it appears Engoron was advised of Greenfield’s violations in a 72-page complaint addressed to his court via email that was also filed with the New York State Bar Association the same day he decided to issue a gag order against former President Donald Trump in his case currently playing out in Engoron’s Manhattan courtroom.

What is more, Trump’s lawyers have also been gagged in the case from publicly discussing “confidential communications” Engoron has with staff, including note-passing from Greenfield. Politico reporter Erica Orden noted that in the lead-up to his decision to gag the attorneys, Trump counsel Christopher Kise had complained about frequent note-passing from Greenfield to Engoron during the trial.

The case is the State of New York v. Trump, No. 2023-05859, in the Supreme Court of New York County, New York.

 

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