Trump’s $175 Million Bond In Jeopardy As Letitia James Brings Fresh Challenges

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The $175 million bond recently posted by former President Donald Trump amid his civil fraud case from New York state Attorney General Letitia James looks like it’s in jeopardy following new filings from state authorities questioning the background for the deal.

New York Judge Arthur Engoron has scheduled a hearing on the dispute for later this month. Engoron himself ruled against Trump at the close of trial on James’ sweeping fraud allegations, imposing financial penalties on the former president that with interest approached half a billion dollars. Trump was originally required to produce a bond covering that full amount for a key option of holding off collections on the penalties amid appeals, but an appeals court in New York lowered the required amount to $175 million and gave Trump another 10 days to come up with it.

Trump came up with a bond deal that partnered him with Knight Specialty Insurance Company, marking a potentially better outcome for Trump after dozens of bond companies reportedly rebuffed him while seeking a bond covering what would originally have been the full amount of his penalties. But the bond company and its parent are apparently not registered in New York like such companies normally involved — or demanded — in the development of bond deals.

“Knight Specialty and its parent company are not authorized to issue surety bonds in New York state and therefore can’t obtain a certificate from the New York Department of Financial Services,” CNN reported, explaining that such a certificate is normally involved in bonds. “The attorney general’s office asked for additional information within 10 days, or it said the bond will not be in effect.”

Throughout all of these developments, a court-backed monitor is still supervising a wide range of the Trump Organization’s business activities. Engoron previously expanded the purview of the monitor’s supervision to include the preparation of bond arrangements, suggesting that she now holds inside information about how this very deal was assembled. The monitor makes regular reports to court on her findings.