Updated Jan 11, 2024 - Politics & Policy

N.Y. judge receives "threat" at house ahead of Trump fraud trial closing arguments

Justice Arthur Engoron presides over the civil fraud trial of the Trump Organization at the New York State Supreme Court in New York City on November 13, 2023

Justice Arthur Engoron presides over the civil fraud trial of the Trump Organization at the New York State Supreme Court in New York City on Nov. 13. Photo: Erin Schaff/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

The New York judge presiding over former President Trump's $370 million civil fraud trial received a threat at his house hours before closing arguments were set to begin on Thursday, a court spokesperson confirmed.

Driving the news: "We've had layers of security protocols in place since the onset of the proceedings. They will continue," Al Baker, a spokesperson for the New York court system said.

  • Baker said that the incident would not delay proceedings.

Separately, the Nassau County Police Department confirmed that the department responded to a residency "at 5:30am to investigate a swatting incident," but declined to provide additional details 

  • Multiple outlets reported on Thursday that authorities responded to a bomb threat at Engoron's home.
  • "There were negative results and the investigation is ongoing," a spokesperson for the Nassau County Police Department said.
  • The department did not confirm the incident took place at Engoron's house.

State of play: The reported threat came hours before Trump was set to appear in the Manhattan court for the start of closing arguments in trial.

  • Trump and Engoron have repeatedly clashed over the course of the trial, including as recently as this week when the former president sought to deliver his own remarks at closing arguments.
  • Engoron rejected Trump's request after the former president's legal team did not agree to certain conditions from the judge before his set deadline, emails posted to the court's public docket on Wednesday showed.
  • Engoron earlier in the trial imposed a gag order on the former president, barring him from making comments about his court staff.

Zoom out: Engoron wrote in a court filing in November that his chambers have received hundreds of threatening phone calls, emails, packages, voicemails and letters since the start of the trial.

Catch up quick: New York Attorney General Letitia James — who filed the suit against Trump, his business and members of his family — last week said Trump should pay $370 million in penalties for decades of financial fraud

  • James had originally requested $250 million when she filed.
  • The AG also argued that Trump and his former business associates should be permanently barred from participating in the real estate industry in New York or "from serving as an officer or director of any New York corporation or other legal entity."

Go deeper: "I won't debate this yet again": Judge spars with Trump lawyer over closing argument

Axios' Ivana Saric contributed reporting.

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