A judge on Tuesday said E. Jean Carroll, the New York writer who won a $5 million jury verdict against Donald Trump last month, can pursue a separate $10 million defamation lawsuit against the former US president.
US District Judge Lewis Kaplan in Manhattan ruled in favor of the former Elle magazine columnist after Trump had argued that the defamation case must be dismissed because jurors had concluded he never raped her.
A spokeswoman for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Trump's lawyer Alina Habba was in Miami, where Trump pleaded not guilty in a separate case to federal criminal charges that he mishandled classified files.
Judge's ruling on the case
On May 9, a Manhattan jury ordered Trump to pay Carroll $2 million for battery and $3 million for defamation, after Carroll accused him of raping her in a department store dressing room in the mid-1990s, and Trump in October 2022 denied that accusation.
The battery claim came under a New York law, the Adult Survivors Act, giving adults a one-year window to sue over sexual abuse that occurred long ago even if statutes of limitations have expired.
Carroll then sought to amend her separate defamation lawsuit filed in 2019 over a similar denial by Trump that June, where he told a White House reporter that the rape never happened and that Carroll was not his "type."
The revision sought to incorporate the jury verdict, as well as insults Trump lobbed a day later in a CNN town hall, where he called Carroll's account "fake" and labeled her a "whack job."