The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) has changed its stance and now believes that former President Donald Trump should not be exempt from the defamation lawsuit by E. Jean Carroll.
The lawsuit stemmed from Carroll’s allegation of sexual assault against Trump, which he vehemently denied. The DOJ reversal clears the way for the civil lawsuit to begin trial in January.
The Justice Department previously supported the view that Trump was acting within the scope of his duties when he denied Carroll’s allegations. However, recent developments have brought about a change in his position. In a letter to attorneys representing both Trump and Carroll, DOJ lawyers said “the Department has determined that it lacks sufficient evidence to support the claim” that Trump was in the business of his employment when he made the disputed statement. Were working within or serving the US government.
The change of status removes a legal hurdle that could have potentially led to the dismissal of Carroll’s defamation suit. That was pending clarification on the scope of the employee’s duties, which was granted earlier this year by a Washington, DC court.
In addition, the DOJ’s reconsideration takes into account Trump’s statements during the battery and defamation trial, as well as his repeated denials long after he left office. DOJ lawyers argued that these statements showed that Trump was motivated by personal grievances rather than a desire to protect and serve the United States government.
Carroll’s attorney Roberta Kaplan expressed gratitude for the DOJ’s amended position, saying, “We have always believed that Donald Trump made his defamatory statements out of personal enmity, malice and malice toward our client, not the United States.” as President of.
In a separate lawsuit filed by Carroll last year, a federal jury found Trump liable for defamation and battery, and awarded him $5 million in damages. Trump is currently appealing against the decision, which has no provision for jail time.
A hearing for Carroll’s defamation suit is scheduled for January, which coincides with the start of the presidential primary season. Trump’s lawyers have yet to comment on the latest developments.
This turn of events signals a significant change in the legal landscape surrounding Trump’s immunity from Carroll’s trial, and sets the stage for a potentially consequential trial in the coming months.