NEW YORK (AP) — A Florida judge on Thursday fined former President Donald Trump and one of his attorneys, ordering them to pay nearly $1 million for filing what he called a bogus lawsuit against Trump’s 2016 rival Hillary Clinton and others.
In a searing filing, U.S. District Judge Donald M. Middlebrooks accused Trump of a “pattern of abuse of court” for filing frivolous lawsuits for political gain, which he said “undermines the state of law” and “amounts to obstruction of justice”. ”
“Here we are faced with a lawsuit that should never have been brought, that was completely frivolous, both in fact and in law, and that was brought in bad faith for an improper purpose,” writes- he.
Citing Trump’s recent lawsuit against the Pulitzer Prize board, New York Attorney General Letitia James, big tech companies and CNN, he described Trump as “a prolific and sophisticated litigator” who uses the courts “to take revenge on political adversaries”.
“He is the mastermind behind the strategic abuse of the judicial process,” he wrote.
The ruling required Trump and his attorney, Alina Habba, to pay nearly $938,000 to defendants in the case.
A spokesperson for Trump and Habba did not immediately respond to requests for comment Thursday evening.
Middlebrooks in September dismissed the lawsuit Trump filed against Clinton, former top FBI officials and the Democratic Party, dismissing the former president’s claims that they and others conspired to derail his winning presidential campaign alleging ties to Russia.
The lawsuit named as defendants Clinton and some of his top advisers, as well as former FBI Director James Comey and other FBI officials involved in the investigation into whether Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign coordinated. with Russia to influence the outcome of the elections.
He then said that the suit contained “glaring structural deficiencies” and that many “characterizations of events are implausible”.
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