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HomeNewsLegal Experts Condemn Trump’s Appeal of the $83.3 Million E. Jean Carroll...

Legal Experts Condemn Trump’s Appeal of the $83.3 Million E. Jean Carroll Defamation Case

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Alina Habba, Trump’s attorney, grants a press briefing
Source: Salon/X

Legal experts are suggesting that there is a gaping hole in an appeal case of former President Donald Trump, all thanks to Attorney Alina Habba. The case in question involves the $83 million defamation case filed by E. Jean Carroll. 

In a January 26 ruling by a Manhattan jury, Trump will have to pay journalist E. Jean Carroll the awarded sum. A breakdown of the award money is $11 million for emotional harm to E. Jean Carroll, $7 million for the blight on her reputation, and $65 million for punitive damage. 

After the jury ruling, Trump has announced that he is shopping for a new law firm to represent him during the appeal case. It was never in the plans for Habba to represent Trump in the Manhattan trial. 

This trial will not be the first between Trump and Carroll. There was a separate ruling last year for Trump to pay $5 million to Carroll for defamation and sexual abuse. Joe Tacopina was the lead counsel on that first trial, with Halina Habba and Michael Madaio supporting.

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 ALSO READ: Court Slams Trump With $83 Million Fine in E. Jean Carroll Defamation Suit

Unfortunately for Trump, Tacopina, the most experienced of the three attorneys, had to resign from his legal team shortly before the commencement of the Manhattan trials. This sudden void had to be filled by Habba and Madaio. However, their relative inexperience led to a much higher award by the jury. Legal analysts suggest that the jury may not have ruled for $83 million in damages if Tacopina had led Trump’s legal team. 

Though Lewis Kaplan, prosecuting judge of the Manhattan case, has a history of ruling against Trump, he still acknowledges the legal capabilities of Tacopina. On the contrary, reports show that Kaplan had to tell off Habba fourteen times in a single day, on basic courtroom etiquette. 

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Based on Habba’s performance during the Manhattan hearing, Brian Manookian rules that Trump has no tenable grounds to appeal the $83 million ruling. Manookian is a Nashville-based lawyer who wrote his legal opinion on Trump’s appeal in an X post. The post has gained considerable traffic since he wrote it a day after the $83 million verdict.

According to Manookian, a defendant needs to “preserve a reversible error at the trial level. However, the Nashville lawyer points out, “Alina Habba had no clue what was occurring throughout the trial. She not only failed to preserve any remote grounds for appeal, like a moron, she repeatedly and unintentionally waived them over and over.” 

ALSO READ: GOP Senators Fume as Trump Blows Up Immigration Compromise

What Manookian is saying in effect is that Habba did not only lose the Manhattan case badly, but she also plugged all the potentials of Trump having a successful appeal. Also, it may be inconsequential that he hires the very best appeal legal team in the country. 

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Manookian was not the only person to publicly question Habba’s legal pedigree. During a guest appearance on MSNBC, former US attorney Harry Litman referred to Habba’s courtroom conduct as a “comedy of bumbling errors.” 

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