Thursday, November 30, 2023
Former President Donald Trump finds himself once again under a gag order as New York Judge Arthur Engoron reinstates the communication restraint during the ongoing civil fraud trial.
The temporary lifting of the gag order by Associate Justice David Friedman earlier this month has been overridden, emphasising the judge's commitment to safeguarding his staff from undue harassment.
The initial gag order, implemented during the trial's early stages, prohibited all parties, including Trump, from making comments about Judge Engoron's staff. The judge's legal clerk faced a barrage of intrusive communications, with dozens of calls to her cell phone, social media messages, and emails.
Additionally, Engoron's chambers received an alarming volume of threatening calls, letters, and packages, prompting the need for protective measures.
Associate Justice David Friedman temporarily lifted the gag order while considering an appeal from Trump's legal team, who argued its unconstitutionality.
However, this respite was short-lived as Engoron reinstated the order, reaffirming the importance of shielding his staff from potential harm.
Trump has already faced financial repercussions for violating the initial gag order, with fines totaling $15,000.
The infractions included a Truth Social post and comments made by Trump outside the courtroom, where he suggested partisanship not only on the judge's part but also on someone "alongside him," interpreted by Engoron as his law clerk.
Despite the fines and a return to the witness stand, Trump's legal team remains steadfast in challenging the gag order's constitutionality.
This legal wrangling over communication restrictions adds a layer of complexity to an already high-profile civil fraud case, underscoring the delicate balance between legal proceedings and protecting individuals involved in the trial.