Lawyer says Trump’s ‘Access Hollywood’ footage won’t be shown to defamation jury

A lawyer for a writer who claims Donald Trump sexually abused her in the 1990s and then defamed her as president in 2019 said Saturday that the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape and two women who accused Trump of abuse would not be shown to a New York jury for defamation damages.

Attorney Roberta Kaplan, who represents advice columnist E. Jean Carroll, revealed that the Republican front-runner in this year’s presidential race could testify in Manhattan federal court as early as Monday, a day before the New Hampshire primary.

The jury is debating whether Trump owes Carroll more than the $5 million granted to her by another jury this spring, which said Trump sexually abused but did not rape Carroll in the dressing room of a posh Manhattan department shop in spring 1996 and subsequently defamed her in October 2022.

Trump attended two of the trial’s first three days, only missing Thursday to attend his mother-in-law’s funeral in Florida.

Lawyer says Trump's 'Access Hollywood' footage won't be shown to defamation jury

In a letter to the judge late Saturday, Kaplan stated that she will not show jurors the 2005 tape in which Trump is captured on a hot mic insulting women in order to keep the trial’s concerns “focused.”

For the same reason, she stated that she will not bring two more Trump accusers as witnesses: Natasha Stoynoff and Jessica Leeds.

Both women testified during the trial, which finished in May. Leeds, a former stockbroker, claimed Trump abruptly touched her without her will on an airline flight in the 1970s, and Stoynoff, a writer, claimed Trump forcibly kissed her while she was interviewing him for a 2005 story.

According to Kaplan, Trump’s lawyers have stated that he is entitled to testify on the “Access Hollywood” tape and the charges of Stoynoff and Leeds, but he would not be if Carroll’s attorneys had not brought them up.

The judge in the case ordered the jury that it must accept the jury’s conclusions from last year, thus the evidence has focused almost entirely on the injury caused to Carroll by Trump’s repeated statements that he never attacked her, does not know her, and believes she is lying.

Trump, 77, has refuted her claims during recent campaign visits, on social media, and at a press conference. He also claims that Carroll, 80, manufactured false accusations against him in order to sell her 2019 memoir, in which she first revealed the charges publicly and for political purposes.

The judge has severely limited what Trump can testify about if he takes the stand, and Carrol’s lawyers are likely to limit the introduction of more evidence to keep Trump from wandering into topics such as what he believes are numerous bogus allegations against him.

However, Kaplan stated that she intends to present the jury statements Trump has made after her client finished testifying in the case on Thursday.

According to Kaplan, Trump intends to reiterate his assertions that he never attacked Carroll and does not know her “a thousand times.”

“Such statements,” she went on to say, “are of course relevant to the issue of punitive damages, as they illustrate that Defendant has no intention of ceasing his defamation campaign against Ms. Carroll, even in the face of judicial proceedings in which his liability for defaming her is settled.”

A lawyer for Trump did not respond to a request for comment on Kaplan’s letter Saturday night.

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