Trump assault accuser E Jean Carroll plans new lawsuit against him

Magazine columnist plans to sue former president for battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress

Former US president Donald Trump denies that he ever assaulted any of the 26 women who have brought allegations against him. EPA
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A writer who accused Donald Trump of raping her more than a quarter of a century ago plans to file a new lawsuit against the former US president, whose lawyer called the action "extraordinarily prejudicial”.

In a letter made public on Tuesday, a lawyer for E Jean Carroll said the former Elle magazine columnist plans to sue Mr Trump for battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress under New York state's Adult Survivors Act.

The law, recently signed by New York Governor Kathy Hochul, gives adult accusers a one-year window to bring civil claims over alleged sexual misconduct, regardless of how long ago it occurred.

Carroll has accused Mr Trump of raping her in late 1995 or early 1996 in a dressing room at the Bergdorf Goodman department store in Midtown Manhattan.

Mr Trump has denied raping her and accused her of concocting the rape claim to sell her book.

Carroll's lawyer, Roberta Kaplan, said her client planned to sue him on November 24 when the state law took effect.

Ms Kaplan said the claims and Carroll's existing defamation case against Mr Trump could be tried together in February 2023.

In a letter responding to Ms Kaplan, Mr Trump's lawyer Alina Habba said he "adamantly" objected to combining both cases, after both sides finished gathering evidence for trial, and that it was "extraordinarily prejudicial" to add the new claims.

"To permit plaintiff to drastically alter the scope and subject matter of this case at such time would severely prejudice defendant's rights," Ms Habba wrote. "Plaintiff's request must be disregarded in its entirety."

Ms Kaplan said she now wanted Mr Trump to testify under oath at a deposition, to better understand his "theory of the case”, despite her saying in February that a deposition would not be needed.

"To be clear, the deposition of defendant need not take very long," she said.

Ms Kaplan's letter is dated August 8 and Ms Habba's August 11. They were made public on Tuesday afternoon. US District Judge Lewis Kaplan oversees the case.

Mr Trump faces an array of litigation and investigations, including into his attempts to undo the 2020 US presidential election and refusal to turn over various documents.

In August, he invoked his constitutional right against self-incrimination more than 400 times during a deposition by New York Attorney General Letitia James, who is conducting a civil inquiry into his Trump Organisation's business practices.

Mr Trump and Carroll are still awaiting a decision by the federal appeals court in Manhattan over whether her defamation case can proceed.

She sued in November 2019 after Mr Trump, then in his third year in the White House, told a reporter that she made up the rape claim, that he did not know her and that "she's not my type”.

He has argued that he was shielded from the suit by a federal law that provides immunity to government employees from defamation claims.

Both sides last argued their appeals on December 3.

Carroll's lawyers have said they want to obtain a DNA sample from Mr Trump to compare against a dress she said she wore during the alleged rape.

Updated: April 10, 2023, 8:48 PM