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World News December 19, 2023

Trump’s million-dollar expert ‘lost all credibility,’ says NY judge

The judge overseeing Donald Trump’s New York civil fraud trial criticized expert witness Eli Bartov, who was paid nearly $1 million by Trump, stating that Bartov “lost all credibility” by staunchly defending Trump’s business records. Bartov, a New York University accounting professor, testified that he found no evidence of fraud in Trump’s family real estate company’s financial statements. The New York attorney general alleges that the company overstated property values to obtain favorable loan and insurance terms. The judge, Justice Arthur Engoron, denied Trump’s requests for a favorable decision, stating that Bartov’s testimony proved that experts could be influenced for a substantial fee. Engoron noted that Bartov’s attempt to justify every misstatement undermined his credibility. The trial, focused on damages, involves allegations that Trump manipulated financial statements. The attorney general seeks $250 million in penalties and Trump’s ban from the New York state real estate business. Trump denies wrongdoing, calling the case politically motivated. The judge acknowledged the subjectivity of property valuations but emphasized the “material misstatements” in Trump’s statements. Closing arguments are scheduled for January 11. Trump faces separate state and federal criminal indictments related to his attempts to overturn the 2020 election results, pleading not guilty to all charges.

Source – CGTN

Photo Credit – Reuters

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