Former President Donald Trump’s lawyer, Alina Habba, will argue a “conflict of interest” between E. Jean Carroll’s lawyer and the judge presiding over her defamation case against Trump as the basis of their appeal.
Habba says she recently discovered that Manhattan federal Judge Lewis Kaplan and Carroll’s lawyer, Roberta Kaplan, worked together at the same powerhouse white-shoe law firm in the 1990s.
Trump-Carroll Judge Was 'Mentor' to E. Jean's Lawyer, Conflict of Interest Appeal Expected.
Donald Trump’s legal team is set to use a previously undisclosed “conflict of interest” as ground…
— Raheem. (@RaheemKassam) January 28, 2024
Habba says neither the federal judge nor Carroll’s lawyer disclosed the conflict of interest, making it a violation of judicial ethics rules.
“This is news to us. We are going to include this in our appeal and take appropriate measures. The fact it wasn’t disclosed is an ethics violation,” Habba continued.
From 1992 to 2016, Roberta Kaplan worked at Paul, Weiss Rifkin, Wharton & Garrison in Midtown, at the same time as Judge Lewis Kaplan, who was a partner there until 1994, until he was appointed to the federal bench by former President Bill Clinton.
A rep for Roberta Kaplan maintains there is no conflict of interest.
“They overlapped for less than two years in the early 1990s at a large law firm when he was a senior partner, and she was a junior associate, and she never worked for him,” said Sawyer, who commented briefly.
According to a former Paul Weiss partner who wishes to remain anonymous, Roberta Kaplan did her best to distinguish herself before her partners, including Lewis Kaplan. The partner says that Lewis acted as her mentor.
Former President Trump was previously ordered to pay Carroll $5 million after a jury found him liable for abusing her inside a Bergdorf Goodman fitting room in 1996.
On Friday, Judge Kaplan oversaw the $83.3 million judgment awarded to Carroll in Manhattan federal court. Following the verdict, Trump said he would appeal.
“Absolutely ridiculous! I fully disagree with both verdicts and will be appealing this whole Biden-directed witch Hunt focused on me and the Republican Party. Our Legal System is out of control and being used as a Political Weapon,” Trump said on Truth Social.
“Judge Kaplan is refusing me my Constitutional Right to Due Process to defend myself against this False Accusation. This is a one-sided trial, where the other side is allowed everything, and we are allowed nothing. He is an extremely abusive individual, the likes of which few have seen before,” Trump wrote in another post.
Former President Trump says that Roberta Kaplan is coaching Carroll to continue with the never-ending witch hunt ahead of the 2024 presidential election.