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Judge Reduces Donald Trump's Bond In Civil Fraud Appeal To $175 Million

Former President Donald Trump has 10 days to post $175 million in bond after a New York judge agreed to reduce the bond payment in his civil fraud appeal on Monday.

Before the judge’s ruling, Trump was due to post $464 million in bond by the end of the day on Monday, or else New York Attorney General Letitia James would be able to begin seizing properties from him in order to fulfill the penalty imposed on him for engaging in fraudulent business practices.

Trump was found guilty of engaging in fraud on Feb. 16 for manipulating business records in order to obtain favorable loan terms from banks and insurers. Judge Arthur Engoron ordered Trump to pay $464 million in fines and barred him from serving as an officer or director of a corporation or applying for a loan in New York state for three years. Trump’s sons, Donald Jr. and Eric, were also barred from board and officer positions for two years.

In a statement released after the bond reduction was announced, Trump claimed that James and Engoron’s credibility had been “shattered.”

“We will abide by the decision of the Appellate Division, and post either a bond, equivalent securities, or cash,” Trump said in the statement. “This also shows how ridiculous and outrageous Engoron’s original decision was at $450 Million.”

The decision to reduce Trump’s bond payment came after he pleaded with the court to either waive or reduce the amount owed to $100 million or less. In a court filing on March 18, Trump complained that the original $464 million bond payment was unprecedented — which is not true — and that he did not have the cash to put up as collateral, leading 30 bond companies to reject his requests for a bond loan.

The judge’s decision gave Trump a lifeline at the last minute before his bond was due. The $175 million, however, is still higher than the reduced bond of $100 million he originally requested. In his statement, Trump claimed that he would post the reduced bond.

It isn’t clear where that money will come from, but Trump is expected to reap a massive financial benefit of $3 billion in stock after the holding company for his social network, Truth Social, merged with Digital World Acquisition Corporation, a shell company whose largest investor is billionaire GOP donor and TikTok investor Jeffrey Yass, on March 22. That potential windfall, however, can’t be used to post bond without Digital World board approval.

If Trump still can’t post bond, James could move quickly to seize his properties. She registered the judgment against Trump issued by a Manhattan court with the clerk’s office in Westchester County, just north of New York City, where Trump holds two pricey properties. The judgment is already registered in Manhattan, where major Trump properties like Trump Tower and the skyscraper at 40 Wall Street could be seized.

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