Trump Must Face Rape Accuser Carroll’s Defamation Lawsuit

Erik Larson

(Bloomberg) -- A judge rejected President Donald Trump’s argument that living in Washington means he can’t be sued in New York by an advice columnist who claims he raped her two decades ago and then lied about it.

The decision denying Trump’s bid to dismiss the case, revealed on Thursday, is an early victory for E. Jean Carroll, who went public with her allegations in a June magazine article and sued in November. The judge also denied Trump’s request to delay the exchange of evidence between the parties.

Trump failed to include a written statement supporting his claim that the case should be dismissed on the grounds that the court lacks jurisdiction, New York State Supreme Court Justice Doris Ling-Cohan said in her ruling.

“There is not even a tweet, much less an affidavit by defendant Trump in support of his motion,” the judge wrote.

Trump’s lawyer in the complaint, Lawrence S. Rosen, didn’t return a call for comment.

Read More: Trump Sued for Defamation by Woman Making 1990s Rape Claim

Carroll says Trump assaulted her in a dressing room at the Bergdorf Goodman luxury department store in Manhattan in 1995 or 1996 after she bumped into him while shopping, a claim the president has denied. In the lawsuit, she alleges he damaged her reputation with a series of false tweets denying her account.

Her lawyer, Roberta “Robbie” Kaplan, argued in a court filing this week that New York has jurisdiction over Trump because his residency at the White House “is not permanent” and his tax returns would prove it. Breaking with decades of presidential tradition, Trump has declined to release his returns.

“We are pleased, yet unsurprised, that the court refused to tolerate Donald Trump’s latest attempt to avoid discovery in our client’s case,” Kaplan said in a statement. “We look forward to moving ahead and proving that Donald Trump lied when he told the world that he did not rape our client and had not even met her.”

Read More: Trump Says Alleged Rape Victim Can’t Sue Him in New York

(Updates with background of Carroll’s claim)

To contact the reporter on this story: Erik Larson in New York at elarson4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: David Glovin at dglovin@bloomberg.net, Peter Jeffrey, Anthony Lin

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