Alina Habba and Donald Trump
By Nicole Silverio
The judge presiding over the defamation trial brought against former President Donald Trump reportedly threatened his attorney, Alina Habba, with jail time during closing arguments Friday.
U.S. District Judge Lewis A. Kaplan told Habba she is “on the verge” of spending time in jail if she continued to talk out of order, according to Politico legal reporter Erica Orden.
“You are on the verge of spending some time in the lockup. Now, sit down,” Kaplan said, according to Orden.
Judge Kaplan to Alina Habba: “You are on the verge of spending some time in the lockup. Now, sit down.”
This came after Madaio and Habba were arguing to include a slide showing tweets they hadn’t entered as evidence.
— erica orden (@eorden) January 26, 2024
Habba and Trump’s other attorney, Michael Madaio, reportedly argued with Kaplan about the judge’s refusal to show a slide showing Twitter posts not previously used as evidence, according to Newsweek. (RELATED: ‘She’s Going To Have Her Hands Full’: Alina Habba Rips Fani Willis For ‘Slew Of Corruption,’ ‘Election Interference’)
Trump later stormed out of the courtroom during the closing argument from Roberta Kaplan, Carroll’s attorney. The judge ordered his legal team to remain seated.
“The record will reflect that Mr. Trump just rose and walked out of the courtroom,” Kaplan said while interrupting the attorney’s closing argument.
🚨Trump leaves court in the middle of Carroll’s lawyer’s summations:
Judge Kaplan: “The record will reflect that Mr. Trump just rose and walked out of the courtroom.”
— Adam Klasfeld (@KlasfeldReports) January 26, 2024
Carroll filed a lawsuit seeking $10 million in compensatory damages for “injury to her reputation, humiliation and mental anguish in her public and private life.” The new lawsuit relates to Trump accusing her of falsehoods during a CNN townhall in May. The current lawsuit is added on to an initial lawsuit filed in 2019 where she accused Trump of defamation for saying the rape allegation is used as a way to sell her new book.
Trump was found liable for sexual battery and defamation against Carroll in a May 2023 court decision. While the jury did not find Trump liable of rape, the initial case awarded Carroll $5 million in damages after she had accused him of raping her inside a department store in the 1990s.
Trump previously sued Carroll for defamation in late June after Carroll publicly insisted he raped her on television following the trial.