Donald Trump Jr. returned to the witness stand Monday to present his family’s side of the story in the New York attorney general’s civil fraud trial against Donald Trump.
Donald Trump Jr. testifies for the defense in a civil fraud trial in New York
9:15 PM ET, November 13, 2023
Key takeaways from Donald Trump Jr.’s return to court in the New York Attorney General’s civil fraud trial
By CNN’s Jeremy Herb, Lauren del Valle and Kara Scannell
Trump Jr.’s testimony often appeared as a long effort to rehabilitate the Trump Organization’s image in the eyes of Judge Arthur Engoron. The former president’s son spoke enthusiastically about the properties he said his father transformed from dilapidated tracts of land into stunning, magnificent buildings and golf courses.
Trump Jr., one of the defendants in the case, was glowing as he described the company’s portfolio — heaping praise on his father as a visionary and real estate “artist,” and speaking up for the value of the buildings after six weeks of testimony from a prosecutor alleging that property valuations were fraudulently inflated .
The testimony indicates how Trump’s lawyers plan to defend a case in which Engoron has already ruled that the former president and his co-defendants are liable for fraud. Engoron is now adjudicating six additional claims and potentially hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.
Here are the main points from Monday in court:
Trump Jr. brags about the Trump Organization. file: Trump’s lawyer, Cliff Robert, spent much of the day asking Trump Jr. to see nearly the entire Trump Organization’s portfolio.
Trump Jr. discussed various projects around the world over the past several decades, recounting a promotional timeline neatly reproduced from the company’s website. He described many of the golf holes, clubhouses, architecture and other features of Trump’s properties as shots of the beauty were shown in the courtroom.
Speaking about Seven Springs Resort, a property in Westchester, New York, that is part of the attorney general’s case, Trump Jr. said the property was “amazing” and “a potential canvas for his father’s art.”
“He’s a real estate artist. He sees things that other people don’t see,” Trump Jr. said of his father.
The Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach, Florida, was a swampland before his father took it over. “Nobody saw any value in it for decades,” Trump Jr. said, and his father turned it into “one of the finest golf clubs in the world.”
Regarding Trump National Doral Golf Club in Florida, Trump Jr. said: “He saw a jewel in the rough and wanted to restore it to its former glory.”
At one point, Robert played the company’s promotional video for Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point in the Bronx, featuring golf legend Jack Nicklaus praising the course.