President Donald Trump became fed up on Monday while testifying during his civil fraud trial hearing and tore into the judge and attorney general.
After giving his testimony in hushed tones for the previous two hours, Trump became obviously agitated and spoke out loud, accusing Justice Arthur Engoron and New York Attorney General Letitia James of “trying to hurt” him.
The real estate tycoon called James a “political hack,” accusing her of using “this case to become governor” and having used it to gain her current post.
Then Trump went after Engoron, pointing at the jurist and proclaiming, “Everybody’s watching this case. He called me a fraud, and he didn’t know anything about me.”
“The fraud is on the court and not on me,” he continued to rant.
“When you rule Mar-A-Lago is worth $18 million and she rules it’s worth $25 million, either people are very stupid or there’s a fraud. The fraud is on behalf of the court.”
In a decision from days before trial began, Engoron found Trump responble for some of James’ main fraud allegations against Trump and cited a Florida official’s appraisal of the Palm Beach golf club at a maximum of $27 million while Trump has claimed it’s worth as much as $1.5 billion.
“He said I’m a fraud because I didn’t value my property correctly,” Trump continued to loudly ramble. “He’s the one who didn’t rule my property correctly.”
Trump insisted he did a “great job” as president.
Finally, AG lawyer Kevin Wallace asked, “You’re done?”
“I’m done,” Trump responded.
At one moment, Judge Engoron threatened to throw Trump off the witness stand if he didn’t stop making speeches from it.
“Mr. Kise, that was a simple yes-or-no question,” Engoron said of Trump being asked about the accuracy of his 2014 financial statement.
“We got another speech,” the judge said. “I beseech you to control him if you can. If you can’t, I will. I will excuse him and use every negative inference that I can.”
In the $250 million fraud case, Trump is testifying in defense of himself, his sons Don Jr. and Eric, and the Trump Organization. Letitia James, the NY attorney general, claims the fraud scheme was ongoing for decades.
Ivanka, the daughter, is scheduled to testify on Wednesday as the last witness for the state.
James claims that the former head of state “grossly” overstated his wealth by up to $3.6 billion annually.
At one point, Trump’s lawyers referred to him as the “future president” of the United States, citing a poll released on Sunday by the New York Times and Siena College that showed the GOP front-runner for 2024 leading President Biden in five of the six crucial swing states.
“The court should grant the former president of the US and, according to the New York Times this morning, perhaps the future president of the US some latitude,” lawyer Chris Kise told the judge.
Trump also downplayed the importance of the annual “statements of financial condition” that the suit says contained fraud.
“They were not really documents that the banks paid much attention to,” Trump testified on Monday.
“I’ve been dealing with banks for 50 years. I probably know banks as well as anybody,” he added in his remarks. “They look at the deal, they look at the location … they don’t want to get involved in financial statements.”