Donald Trump Ordered to Pay New York Times $400,000 for Frivolous Lawsuit

The former president claimed the newspaper and three reporters were part of an “insidious plot” to expose his tax records

Former President Trump Testifies In Trump Organization Civil Fraud Case
Donald Trump speaks to the media after testifying at his tax fraud trial in New York State Supreme Court (Credit: David Dee Delgado/Getty Images)

A New York state judge on Thursday ordered Donald Trump to pay $392,638.69 in legal fees stemming from a “frivolous” 2021 lawsuit against The New York Times and three Times writers that had already been dismissed.

“This just happened: A New York State judge has ordered Donald Trump to pay The New York Times $392,638.69 for legal fees connected to a frivolous lawsuit he brought against the paper, two of my colleagues and me,” Times reporter Susanne Craig posted on Friday.

Craig won the Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting in 2019 for her story in the Times that revealed that Trump’s millions, supposedly earned through his various businesses, were actually inherited from his father. The next year, she reported that Trump paid just $750 in federal income tax in 2016 and didn’t pay any federal taxes in 10 of the previous 15 years.

Along with Craig, Trump sued the newspaper, senior writer David Barstow, investigative journalist Russell Buettner, various John Does and “ABC Corporations 1 through 10.” The suit also named the former president’s niece Mary L. Trump, who wrote the scathing 2020 anti-Trump book “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.”

The case, which Trump filed in 2021, was dismissed on May 3 of last year. Trump accused the paper of being part of an “insidious plot” with his estranged niece to improperly obtain his confidential tax records.

On Friday, a federal judge ruled in Trump’s favor elsewhere by dismissing a New York case brought by investors in 2018 who said they’d been fooled into backing the “Iris 5000” video phone because of the “Celebrity Apprentice” host’s endorsement, the Daily Beast reported.

U.S. District Judge Lorna G. Schofield decided that the case was no longer a federal one and would be referred back to the individual states — California, Maryland and Pennsylvania — where the plaintiffs reside. “Ordered that plaintiff’s claims are dismissed without prejudice to filing in state court,” she wrote in her order.

Trump is due back in court in New York City on Tuesday for his second rape defamation trial. E. Jean Carroll was awarded $5 million in May after a jury concluded that Trump had sexually abused her in 1996 and defamed her in 2022. In the second trial, a jury will decide whether the former president’s derogatory post-verdict remarks about Carroll warrant an additional $10 million settlement.

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