Appeals court denies case delay over Trump immunity claim in E. Jean Carroll suit

Appeals court denies case delay over Trump immunity claim in E. Jean Carroll suit

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A federal appeals court on Thursday denied a request by former President Trump to pause author E. Jean Carroll’s defamation case against him while the Supreme Court considers his claim of immunity.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York issued a single-page denial of the appeal, two weeks after ruling that Trump cannot assert presidential immunity in the Carroll case. 

Trump’s lawyers had asked for a 90-day pause in Carroll’s motion, writing “the denial of this right would upend the longstanding rule that lower courts are divested of jurisdiction for the pendency of an immunity-related appeal.”

In the earlier ruling, the Second Circuit ruled Trump had already waived immunity by failing to assert it in 2019.

Carroll alleged the former president raped her in a New York department store in the mid-1990s, a claim Trump has repeatedly denied, and sued him in 2019. A jury found the former president liable for sexual assault, battery and defamation in May and awarded her $5 million but found that she had not proven rape. Carroll has since sued Trump a second time for defamation, with a federal judge already finding him liable. A trial to determine damages is set to begin Jan. 16 to determine the amount the former president owes.

Trump countersued Carroll in June for continuing to assert he raped her after the first verdict, but Judge Lewis Kaplan, the judge in both cases, dismissed the counterclaim in August. 

Special Counsel Jack Smith has asked the Supreme Court to rule on the former president’s claim of immunity on federal charges pertaining to his attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election. Despite Trump’s frequent attacks on Smith, Trump’s lawyers cited Smith in the motion, referencing his characterization of the immunity question as “weighty and consequential.”

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