Trump Trial Delayed Due to Covid Concerns Surrounding Attorneys

New York City, NY – The defamation trial between writer E. Jean Carroll and former President Donald Trump was postponed on Monday due to concerns over Covid-19. Trump was present in the courtroom, but his lawyers raised concerns about potential exposure to the virus. Trump’s lawyer, Alina Habba, reported having a fever after being in contact with relatives who later tested positive for Covid-19. Habba’s co-counsel, Michael Madaio, was also exposed. Both lawyers tested negative for the virus on Monday morning. However, a juror in the case had experienced illness on the way to court and went home to get tested, leading the judge to grant a one-day postponement.

Carroll filed the defamation suit against Trump after he called her sexual abuse allegations against him “pure fiction” and a “hoax” while he was president. The trial was expected to conclude on Monday, allowing Trump’s defense case to begin. Trump, one of only two defense witnesses, had previously expressed his intention to testify. However, the postponement means that testimony will now be delayed until at least Tuesday.

The request to delay Trump’s testimony until Wednesday, which coincides with the New Hampshire primary, was met with objections from Carroll’s lawyer, Roberta Kaplan, who urged for the trial to conclude promptly. The judge, Lewis Kaplan, acknowledged the circumstances and stated that a decision on the timing of Trump’s testimony would not be made at that moment.

This trial marks the second legal battle between Carroll and Trump. In the previous trial, Carroll accused Trump of raping her in a New York City department store dressing room in 1996. Although the jury did not find Trump liable for rape, they held him liable for battery and defamation, ultimately awarding Carroll $5 million in damages. Trump is currently appealing the verdict.

Notably, Trump had initially planned to testify in the previous trial but later decided against it. The outcome of this defamation trial is highly anticipated, as it may potentially have significant implications for both Carroll and Trump. However, due to the delay caused by Covid-19 concerns, the trial’s timeline and the subsequent testimony of key witnesses, like Trump, remain uncertain.