A federal judge on Thursday ordered former US President Donald Trump and his lawyers to pay more than $930,000 in damages for a baseless lawsuit against former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton alleging abuse of the legal system.
Judge John Middlebrooks, who dismissed Trump's lawsuit in September, said the damages were justified because the former Republican president had shown a pattern of abusing the courts to advance his political agenda. “This case should never have been brought,” U.S.
District Judge Donald M. Middlebrooks wrote in a 46-page ruling, reports NYTimes. “Its inadequacy as a legal claim was evident from the start. No reasonable lawyer would have filed it. Intended for a political purpose, none of the counts of the amended complaint stated a cognizable legal claim”.
“Mr. Trump is a prolific and sophisticated litigant who is repeatedly using the courts to seek revenge on political adversaries,” Judge Middlebrooks wrote. “He is the mastermind of strategic abuse of the judicial process, and he cannot be seen as a litigant blindly following the advice of a lawyer.
He knew full well the impact of his actions”. “A continuing pattern of misuse of the courts by Mr. Trump and his lawyers undermines the rule of law, portrays judges as partisans and diverts resources from those who have suffered actual legal harm,” he wrote.
Mr. Trump’s claims were “a hodgepodge of disconnected, often immaterial events, followed by an implausible conclusion,” the judge wrote, adding, “This is a deliberate attempt to harass; to tell a story without regard to facts”.
Trump sued Clinton in 2016
Trump sued Clinton, the Democratic presidential contender in 2016, alleging that she and other Democrats sought to rig the election by falsely accusing his campaign of ties to Russia. In 2020, Trump stepped down from the presidency after being defeated by Democrat Joe Biden, after which he repeatedly made false claims, talking about election fraud. The billionaire has announced his candidacy for the presidential elections in 2024.
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