Donald Trump faces legal challenges in 4 courtrooms on the same day

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Tuesday, November 22, 2022
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The cases highlight the legal walls that are closing in on the former president. Ken Rosato reports.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- Cases involving Donald Trump played out in four different courtrooms Tuesday, three of them in New York City.

The cases highlight the legal walls that are closing in on the former president as he mounts a new run for the White House.

MAR-A-LAGO DOCUMENTS CASE

A federal appeals court appears deeply skeptical that former President Donald Trump was entitled to a review by an independent arbiter of documents seized in an FBI search of his Florida estate.

The three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, including two Trump appointees, repeatedly suggested Trump was seeking special treatment in having a so-called special master conduct an independent inspection of records taken in the Aug. 8 search of Mar-a-Lago.

The judges indicated through their questioning that they were likely to side with the Justice Department, which has sought an immediate end to a special master review process that it says has unnecessarily delayed its investigation into the presence of classified documents at Mar-a-Lago. It was not immediately clear when the court might rule.

TRUMP ORGANIZATION CRIMINAL CASE

In New York, prosecutors in the Trump Organization's criminal tax fraud trial rested their case Monday earlier than expected, pinning hopes for convicting Donald Trump's company largely on the word of two top executives who cut deals before testifying that they schemed to avoid taxes on company-paid perks.

Allen Weisselberg, the company's longtime finance chief, and Jeffrey McConney, a senior vice president and controller, testified for the bulk of the prosecution's eight-day case.

The Trump Organization's lawyers opened their defense by calling to the witness stand the accountant who handled tax returns and other financial matters for Trump, the Trump Organization and hundreds of Trump entities since the 1980s.

NYAG CIVIL CASE

A separate group of Trump lawyers were set to appear at a hearing as part of the New York Attorney General's civil lawsuit against Trump, his children and his company.

The NYAG has already successfully installed a court-appointed monitor to oversee parts of the company.

DEFAMATION LAWSUIT

And former Elle columnist and GMA contributor E. Jean Carroll was scheduled to appear in federal court for a hearing about her defamation lawsuit against Trump.

A lawsuit against Trump is also expected from Carroll, who says he raped her in a department store dressing room in the mid-1990s. Carroll is filing the suit under a New York law that opens on Thanksgiving allowing alleged sex assault victims to sue regardless of time frame.

Trump denies the allegation, saying Carroll made it up to sell a book. Carroll is already suing Trump for defamation, saying his denials and disparaging comments to the media damaged her reputation.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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