Former President Donald Trump testified in a New York courtroom for a civil trial against him and his family’s business empire.
He repeatedly criticized the judicial process and accused the New York Attorney General of pursuing him for political reasons.
The case revolves around a $250 million fraud scheme, with the state seeking to recoup the money and limit the Trumps’ business activities in New York.
“The numbers of my net worth are substantially more than the numbers reflected on the financial statements,” he said in one exchange. “Therefore you have no case.”
“It’s a terrible, terrible thing. These are political operatives that I’m going to be dealing with right now,” Trump said. “It’s a very sad situation for our country.”
“You and about every other Democrat district attorney, A.G., and U.S. attorney were coming at me from 15 different sides, all Democrats, Trump haters,” Trump said.
Trump defended the valuations of his properties and faced reprimands from the judge for straying from questions.
The judge will decide the trial’s outcome and expressed frustration with Trump’s testimony.
“No, I’m not here to hear what he has to say,” Judge Engoron said at one point with his voice rising. “I’m here to hear him answer questions. Sit down!”
“We got another speech. I beseech you to control him if you can. If you can’t, I will. I will excuse him and draw every negative inference that I can,” Engoron said.
“The disclaimer clause says if there’s a mistake, if there’s something, don’t rely on it,” Trump said. “[The disclaimers] always hold up in court, except maybe this court.”
“There are a lot of advantages to the club status, the smartest thing to do would be to have a club and have one member,” Trump said.
“At some point maybe in my very old age I’ll go there and do the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen,” Trump added.
Trump also discussed the valuations of his properties, including Mar-a-Lago, and faced questions about a Chicago property loan.
He indicated that his company is considering policy changes in response to the investigation.
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