A New York appeals court rejected President Donald Trump’s bid Thursday to toss the gag order imposed on him in his New York civil fraud trial, along with the fines imposed for violations.
The court found that Trump had not used the right legal method to challenge the order imposed in October by Judge Arthur Engoron. Trump’s lawyers asked the court in November to vacate the gag order using a provision of the law to sue Engoron directly, which the court found was an “extraordinary remedy” not appropriate when the “potential harm is small,” according to ABC News.
“Here, the gravity of potential harm is small, given that the Gag Order is narrow, limited to prohibiting solely statements regarding the court’s staff,” the court wrote. “Further, while the Gag Order and Contempt Orders were not issued pursuant to formal motion practice, they are reviewable through the ordinary appellate process.”
The gag order bars Trump and other parties in the case from speaking publicly about Engoron’s staff. Engoron imposed it after Trump made a Truth Social post about his law clerk Allison Greenfield, referencing her as the “girlfriend” of Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer
“To the extent there may have been appealable issues with respect to any of the procedures the court implemented in imposing the financial sanctions, the proper method of review would be to move to vacate the Contempt Orders, and then to take an appeal from the denial of those motions,” the ruling continued.
The New York Appellate Division, First Judicial Department temporarily paused the order Nov. 16 but reinstated it Nov. 30.
Trump was fined twice for violations of the order, first for $5,000 after he failed to remove the post about Greenfield from his campaign website for 17 days after the order was issued and second for $10,000 after telling reporters the person sitting next to Engoron was “very partisan.”
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