It was indeed a bruising encounter. On one side was former president Donald Trump, while on the other was his judicial nemesis Judge Arthur Engoron, who is presiding over Trump’s New York civil fraud case, and has already hinted that Trump has committed fraud.
Trump took the witness stand on Monday, and called Engoron a “hater” and accused him of being a part of the conspiracy against him plotted by ‘Democratic Party’.
“You and every other Democrat district attorney, A.G. and U.S. attorney were coming at me from 15 different sides, all Democrats, all haters,” said Trump.
In the case brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James, Trump, along with his two adult sons, Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr., and Trump Organisation are the co-defendants.
During his time in the witness stand, Trump was accused of making “speeches” from that very spot by the Judge. The latter also asked Trump’s lawyer, Christopher Kise, to keep his client under control. While their encounter was heated and hostile, legal opinion is divided over how well Engoron handled the situation.
A formal federal prosecutor and the co-founder of the west Coast Trial Lawyers legal firm, Neama Rahmani, feels that the judge was too soft on the former president. “Judge Engoron did little to control the former president,” he said.
Rahmani added that the judge asking the lawyer to control its client is a sign of weakness as it falls under the judge’s responsibility to handle his court. He added that Engoron has been holding back on striking Trump with a contempt charge.