The former president has twice been reprimanded for violating a gag order imposed by the judge in his New York civil fraud trial and now his legal team is subject to the same order.
Attorney Chris Kise accused Judge Engoron’s law clerk of “rolling her eyes” and unfairly influencing the judge. Kise should have known better than to publicly disparage Engoron’s law clerk after Donald Trump was been fined for the same conduct.
Engoron has made it clear during the trial that he will not tolerate attacks on court staff and imposed a gag order on Trump that did not previously extend to his attorneys. The order does not prevent Trump from criticising the judge.
There is little doubt these attacks have influenced supporters of the former president to make threats against the judge and his law clerk, who Engoron defended as “a civil servant, she’s doing what I ask her to do.”
“Since the commencement of this bench trial, my chambers have been inundated with hundreds of harassing and threatening phone calls, voicemails, emails, letters and packages,” Engoron wrote in his ruling.
The former president and his attorneys have been given repeated warnings from the judge about their conduct.
Donald Trump will take the stand on Monday after his adult sons testified this week. His daughter Ivanka will front the court later in the week after her bid to avoid testifying failed on appeal.