Judge rejects Trump’s candidacy to delay trial of woman alleging rape

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U.S. President Donald Trump speaks at a Whirlpool Corporation washing machine factory in Clyde, Ohio on August 6, 2020.

JOSHUA ROBERTS / Reuters

A New York judge has overturned President Donald Trump’s attempt to delay the trial of a woman who accused him of rape, ruling in a ruling released Thursday that the presidency was not protecting him from the case.

Highlighting a recent United States Supreme Court ruling that the president is not immune from a criminal investigation by the New York prosecutor, Manhattan judge Verna Saunders said the same principle s ‘applied to the defamation lawsuit of E. Jean Carroll, in which Trump’s lawyers argued that the Constitution forbids it. presidents to be drawn into prosecutions in state courts.

“No, it’s not,” Saunders wrote.

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The move allows Carroll – who is looking for Trump’s DNA as potential evidence – to continue his action. She says he outraged her by denying her claim he raped her in the 1990s.

“We are now anxious to move forward with the discovery so that we can prove that Donald Trump defamed E. Jean Carroll when he lied about him in connection with his courageous decision to tell the truth about Donald Trump had sexually assaulted her, ”says her lawyer Roberta Kaplan.

A message has been sent to Trump’s lawyers regarding the decision.

Carroll, who was a longtime columnist for Elle magazine until December, went public last year with an allegation that Trump raped her in a locker room at a luxury Manhattan department store in the mid-years. 1990. She said it happened after they met and had fun trying on a bodysuit.

Trump said Carroll was “totally lying” to sell a memoir and had never met her, although a 1987 photo showed them and their then-spouses at a social event . He said it had just captured a moment when he was standing in line.

Carroll is attempting to obtain a DNA sample from Trump to see if it matches the as yet unidentified male genetic material found on a dress she says she was wearing in the alleged attack that she did not put on until ‘at a photoshoot last year.

Trump’s lawyers have argued that the lawsuit should not be continued at least until New York’s highest court decides – in a separate case – whether an incumbent president is immune from all lawsuits unrelated to his official duties.

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Previous US Supreme Court rulings have said that sitting presidents cannot be prosecuted anywhere for official actions – to prevent the prospect of prosecution from influencing their decision-making – but they are subject to federal civil lawsuits relating to private conduct.

The High Court did not specifically consider whether prosecutions relating to the private conduct of a president can proceed in state courts.

Lawyers for Carroll, however, argued that the judges had essentially settled the issue when they ruled last month on the ability of Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. to subpoena the tax cases of Trump to a state grand jury inquiry.

“We cannot conclude that absolute immunity is necessary or appropriate,” the Supreme Court said.

The ruling gave Trump’s lawyers leeway to challenge Vance’s subpoena on other grounds, and they are doing so. Trump, a Republican, called the Democratic DA’s investigation into his financial transactions “pure witch-hunt.”

Trump’s attorney, Marc Kasowitz, argued that the Supreme Court’s decision “was limited to the criminal context and its reasoning does not extend to civil actions.”

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Carroll’s lawsuit seeks damages and a retraction of Trump’s statements, claiming they damage his career and reputation.

The Associated Press does not identify people who say they have been sexually assaulted unless they come forward publicly.

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