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Trump asks court to toss sanctions in failed Clinton suit

Trump asks court to toss sanctions in failed Clinton suit

Former President Trump asked a federal appeals court Tuesday to toss nearly $1 million in sanctions against him and his attorneys after a judge found a lawsuit brought against Hillary Clinton and other defendants was without merit.

In a filing in the Atlanta-based 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Trump’s lawyers argued that a federal judge’s order dismissing a lawsuit in 2022 and further ordering sanctions in 2023 against Trump and his attorneys were not justified. They also argue the sanctions “violated due process and was an abuse of discretion.”

“The district court made a clear error and abused its discretion in finding that Appellants acted in bad faith, and in imposing almost $1 million in inherent authority sanctions,” the appeal stated.

U.S. District Judge Donald Middlebrooks, an appointee of former President Clinton, sanctioned Trump and his legal team more than $900,000 in a January 2023 order for what he described as a “continuing pattern” of misusing the court.

“This case should never have been brought. Its inadequacy as a legal claim was evident from the start. No reasonable lawyer would have filed it. Intended for a political purpose, none of the counts of the amended complaint stated a cognizable legal claim,” Middlebrooks wrote last year.

The sanctions came after the same judge dismissed a lawsuit in 2022 brought by Trump against his 2016 political opponent Hillary Clinton and several others. The lawsuit alleged the defendants “orchestrated a malicious conspiracy to disseminate patently false and injurious information” about Trump and his campaign.

The former president claimed the “conspiracy” was conducted “all in the hopes of destroying his life, his political career and rigging the 2016 Presidential Election in favor of Hillary Clinton.”

Middlebrooks said at the time that the lawsuit was a “political manifesto.”

Attorneys for Clinton declined to comment.

The Hill has reached out to Trump’s legal team and his campaign for comment.

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