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Judge in Trump N.Y. fraud case denies request to pause enforcement of $355M penalty

By Ehren Wynder
Former U.S. President Donald Trump sits in New York State Supreme Court during his civil fraud trial in January. Judge Arthur Engoron said in an email that Trump's legal team "have failed to explain, much less justify, any basis for a stay" of the decision as requested by his lawyer. File Pool Photo by Michael M. Santiago/UPI
Former U.S. President Donald Trump sits in New York State Supreme Court during his civil fraud trial in January. Judge Arthur Engoron said in an email that Trump's legal team "have failed to explain, much less justify, any basis for a stay" of the decision as requested by his lawyer. File Pool Photo by Michael M. Santiago/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 22 (UPI) -- The judge in former President Donald Trump's New York civil fraud case has denied his lawyers' request to delay enforcement of the decision.

Judge Arthur Engoron said in an email that Trump's legal team "have failed to explain, much less justify, any basis for a stay. I am confident that the Appellate Division will protect your appellate rights."

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Engoron ruled last week that Trump and the Trump Organization must pay nearly $355 million, plus $100 million in interest, for falsifying financial statements and inflating the value of its assets.

The judge also banned Trump from conducting real estate business in New York for three years. Trump's sons, Eric and Donald Jr., each were slapped with a $4 million fine and a two-year ban.

New York Attorney General Letitia James submitted a draft judgment on Tuesday. Trump's attorney Clifford Robert argued the proposal was an "improper, unilateral submission" that "fails to provide any notice whatsoever, thereby depriving defendants of the opportunity to be heard before judgment is entered."

Robert then in a separate letter asked Engoron to delay enforcement for 30 days, saying it would "allow for an orderly post-judgment process, particularly given the magnitude of judgment."

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State attorney Andrew Amer opposed the request, arguing Robert failed to justify why an additional 30 days would be necessary and that Engoron's decision in the case left "no room for further debate."

Amer also rejected Robert's request to change the addresses of six of Trump's businesses -- which are defendants in the case -- from New York to Florida.

Trump, meanwhile, continues to deny any wrongdoing and has said he will appeal Engoron's decision.

The former president still must be able to post bond covering the $355 million if he hopes to appeal.

John Coffee, a Columbia University law professor, told CBS News "that will be costly. Some banks will post the bond for him, for a hefty fee, but they will want security that they can liquidate easily, and that may require some sale of some of his assets."

James, meanwhile, has said that she is prepared to ask a judge to seize Trump's assets if he cannot pay the $355 million fine.

"We are prepared to make sure that the judgment is paid to New Yorkers," James told ABC News.

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