Judge fires and sanctions Trump’s lawyers for lawsuit against Hillary Clinton and Democrats
A federal judge on Thursday ordered sanctions against former President Donald Trump’s lawyer in his failed lawsuit against Hillary Clinton, the Democratic National Committee and numerous others who he claimed conspired to undermine the 2016 presidential election.
Judge Donald Middlebrooks ordered Trump’s lawyers Alina Habba, Michael Madaio, Peter Ticktin, Jamie Alan Sasson and their law firms to pay $50,000 in court fines and $16,274.23 in legal fees to Charles Dolan, one of more than two dozen people or entities who were named as defendants in the lawsuit.
Middlebrooks, who previously dismissed the lawsuit, calling it a “two-hundred-page political manifesto,” said the attorneys ignored warnings from Dolan, a Clinton campaign volunteer, and his lawyer that their facts were wrong, including basic information such as where he lived is.
“The statutes in this case contained factual allegations that were either knowingly false or made in reckless disregard for the truth,” Middlebrooks wrote.
“Not only was it initiated by a plea for a rifle, this was a lawsuit for a rifle. “Thirty-one individuals and organizations have been subpoenaed, forced to hire lawyers to defend against frivolous claims,” the judge wrote. “The only common thread against them was Mr. Trump’s animus.”
Middlebrooks added: “The prosecutor deliberately misrepresented public documents by selectively using some portions while omitting other information including findings and conclusions that contradict his narrative. … It was too frequent to be a coincidence. Each request was frivolous, at most prohibited under established, well-settled existing law. These were political complaints disguised as legal demands.”
“This cannot be attributed to an incompetent lawyer,” he wrote. “It was a deliberate use of the justice system to further a political agenda.”
Dolan’s lawyer, George Doumar, praised the verdict. “The attempt to use the courts for political purposes undermines the foundations of our judicial system, I think that sends a message. That message applies to both lawyers and clients,” said Doumar.
“We gave Trump’s lawyers multiple warnings, and instead of heeding the warnings and serving as guardians of the integrity of the judicial system as lawyers are supposed to do, they doubled down on unsubstantiated claims and apparently chose not to tell their client that it was so wrong that they didn’t could go forward,” added Doumar.
“It should come as no surprise that we will be appealing this decision,” Habba said in a statement after the ruling.
Ticktin did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Trump appealed dismissal of the lawsuit.
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