Trump posts bond to freeze $454 million fraud fine during appeal – Hartford Courant

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Erik Larson | Bloomberg News (TNS)

NEW YORK — Donald Trump followed through on his vow to pay a $175 million bond that will put a massive civil fraud verdict on hold while he appeals, assuring New York state won’t start seizing the former president’s assets, at least for now.

The bond, posted with an appeals court in Manhattan on Monday, prevents enforcement of a $454 million penalty a judge levied against the real estate mogul for lying about his assets to get better loan terms. Trump, who is campaigning to return to the White House in the November election, is still on the hook for the full amount if his appeal fails.

Trump initially had struggled to get a bond because he was required to put up 120% of the full penalty, or more than half a billion dollars. But the appeals court on March 25 granted his request for a smaller bond, which Trump claimed was a sign the appeals court would overturn the verdict.

The former president had said a full bond was “unattainable” because 30 insurance companies that arrange such bonds wouldn’t take his real estate as collateral and would only take cash. New York Attorney General Letitia James, who sued Trump and won at a non-jury trial, had argued a full bond was necessary because Trump can’t be trusted to pay the fine if he loses the appeal.

Getting the smaller bond helped Trump overcome one the biggest financial obstacles of his career. Without it, the former president claimed he’d be forced to hold a “fire sale” of assets to raise cash, hurting his ability to run his company and pay for his 2024 election campaign. His losses from such sales would be irreversible, he argued, even if he won the appeal.

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