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Trump can’t secure $464M for New York fraud case, his lawyers say

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(The Center Square) — Former President Donald Trump has been unable to secure a $464 million bond for a civil judgment against him in a New York business fraud case, his attorneys said in a new court filing.

In the filing with the Appellate Division of Manhattan Supreme Court, lawyers for Trump and his co-defendants said it has been “impossible” for them to get an appeal bond after spending “countless hours” trying to secure the funds. The lawyers said securing the bond would require cash reserves of up to $1 billion, which neither Trump nor his company can provide.

Trump’s team has consulted at least 30 surety companies through four different brokers to secure the appeal bond, but so far, it has been unsuccessful, the lawyers wrote.

“Defendants’ ongoing diligent efforts have proven that a bond in the judgment’s full amount is ‘a practical impossibility,'” Trump’s lawyers wrote.

The court filing includes a signed affidavit from Gary Giulietti, president of the Northeast division of the Lockton Companies, who wrote that obtaining an appeal bond for $464 million is a “practical impossibility under the circumstances presented.”

Giulietti said only a handful of bond surety companies approved by the U.S. Treasury to underwrite that big, and many will only issue a single bond to a maximum of $100 million.

“Simply put, a bond of this size is rarely, if ever, seen,” he wrote. “In the unusual circumstance that a bond of this size is issued, it is provided to the largest public companies in the world, not to individuals or privately held businesses.”

Trump is appealing a ruling by Superior Court Judge Arthur Engoron in a civil fraud lawsuit brought by James in 2022, accusing the judge of “errors of law and/or fact, abused its discretion, and/or acted in excess of its jurisdiction.”

Engoron found that Trump, his company and top executives, including his sons Donald Trump Jr and Eric Trump, deceived banks and insurers by inflating the value of his family’s wealth on financial statements used to secure loans.

The judge ordered Trump to pay $355 million in penalties, which, with interest, has grown to nearly $464 million. That fine will increase by nearly $112,000 daily until he pays.

The ruling also stipulates that the former president’s sons can’t serve as officers or directors of any New York corporation for two years. The judge also fined Trump’s sons $4 million each.

In a recent ruling, Associate Justice Anil Singh of the state Appellate Division denied Trump’s request to postpone his obligation to post bond for the $454 million until a five-member appellate panel hears his motion to stay enforcement of that judgment.

Under New York state law, Trump must file a surety bond to back the monetary judgment while the court considers his appeal. Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat who brought the fraud charges, has the authority to seize some of his assets if Trump doesn’t pay the fines.

The civil case is one of Trump’s many legal challenges as he continues his march to the GOP presidential nomination to challenge incumbent Democratic President Joe Biden in November.

Trump has denied any wrongdoing, claiming the indictments are part of a politically motivated “witch hunt” to keep him off the ballot.

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