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Trump On Trial In New York Fraud Case: Insights on Jury Absence and Mar-A-Lago’s Valuation

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Introduction

Former President Donald Trump is currently facing a civil fraud case in New York. The trial, which began on Monday, has already seen significant developments and continues to captivate the public’s attention. This article provides an overview of the trial and highlights key points of interest, including the absence of a jury and the disputed valuation of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago property.

Day 1 Recap: Fraud Claims and Opening Statements

The trial against Trump and his co-defendants officially commenced on Monday. The state of New York brought the lawsuit, alleging various claims of fraud against the defendants. In their opening statements, Trump’s attorney, Chris Kise, emphasized the former president’s successful real estate career, while the state’s attorney, Kevin Wallace, argued that the defendants conspired to commit fraud through their financial statements.

Mar-a-Lago’s Valuation Controversy

A point of contention during the trial was the valuation of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago property in Florida. Trump and his lawyers have maintained that the property is worth $1 billion or more, while an assessor valued it between $18 million and $27 million. Trump’s legal team argued that the assessed value does not accurately reflect the true market value, which is determined by what someone is willing to pay for the property.

It is worth noting that real estate marketplace Zillow Group inadvertently listed the sale of Mar-a-Lago for $422 million in August. However, Zillow’s estimated value for the property is $24.15 million, significantly lower than Trump’s claimed valuation.

Judge vs. Jury Complaint

One of the notable aspects of the trial is Trump’s complaint about the absence of a jury. Although Trump expressed a desire for a jury trial, his lawyers did not make a formal request for it. Consequently, the trial is being decided by Judge Arthur Engoron. Engoron addressed the absence of a jury at the beginning of the trial, noting that neither side had requested one.

Day 2 of the Trial: Trump’s Testimony

On the second day of the trial, Trump once again attended the proceedings. During a break, Trump confirmed that he would testify in the case. His testimony is anticipated by both the state of New York and the defense. Engoron reminded Trump’s lawyers that the trial was not the appropriate venue to contest his previous rulings, suggesting that appeals should be pursued instead.

What’s Next?

New York Attorney General Letitia James seeks $250 million in penalties against Trump and his companies, as well as a ban on Trump conducting business in the state. The civil fraud trial is expected to continue until December 22, 2023, according to Engoron. Trump’s sons, Donald Jr. and Eric, are among the witnesses expected to testify, along with Trump himself. Trump’s daughter Ivanka, previously a co-defendant, may also be called to testify. Aside from the ongoing civil fraud trial, Trump faces other charges related to the 2020 election, hush money payments, and handling of classified documents.

DWAC Price Action

Shares of Digital World Acquisition Corporation (DWAC) are up 3% to $15.84 on Tuesday. DWAC is merging with Trump Media & Technology Group, the media company founded and owned by Trump.

Disclaimer: The above references an opinion and is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be investment advice. Seek a duly licensed professional for investment advice.

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