Donald Trump renews the legal battle regarding a $937,989 fine in the unsuccessful lawsuit against Hillary Clinton

Donald Trump is actively contesting a $937,989 fine imposed on him by a federal judge in Florida last year for what the judge deemed “frivolous” claims against Hillary Clinton. This marks another attempt by the former president to counter a series of expensive legal setbacks.

Trump, along with his attorney Alina Habba, who shares joint liability for the Florida fine, has called on the federal appeals court in Atlanta to annul the sanction, asserting that it was a “clear error” made by a judge with political bias. Donald M. Middlebrooks, the U.S. District Judge who appointed former President Bill Clinton, imposed the penalty in January 2023, characterizing Trump’s lawsuit as an attempt to use the courts for “political theater and grievance,” and stating that “no reasonable lawyer would have filed it.”

Trump has posted a bond of $1.03 million, representing 110% of the fine, while pursuing an appeal. This mirrors the arrangement he faces in challenging approximately $540 million owed after losing a civil fraud case initiated by the New York attorney general and a defamation lawsuit in Manhattan by E. Jean Carroll, both of which were handled by Habba.

While the fine in Florida is comparatively modest compared to the New York cases, Trump and Habba are intensifying their argument that Clinton orchestrated a vast conspiracy against Trump, collaborating with the FBI to promote false Russia-related claims during his tenure. A panel of three judges in Atlanta will determine whether to overturn the fine or potentially revive the lawsuit against Clinton, which Middlebrooks strongly criticized when dismissing the complaint.

In their appeal, Trump and Habba contend that Middlebrooks denied them due process to contest the fine before its imposition and also failed to recuse himself earlier in the case after Trump alleged bias. This legal battle over sanctions could eventually escalate to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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