Trump posts $175 million bond in New York fraud case

Former President Donald Trump and co-defendants in his New York civil fraud case have posted a bond of $175 million, according to a court filing Monday by an insurance company.

The posting brings to an end a six-week ordeal in which Trump scrambled to fend off possible seizure of property or assets stemming from a $464 million judgment by a judge who found he gained hundreds of millions through a yearslong fraud scheme targeting banks and insurers. Trump was required to post bond to avoid enforcement of the judgment pending his appeal.

Alina Habba, an attorney for Trump, said Trump’s payment was made “as promised.”

“He looks forward to vindicating his rights on appeal and overturning this unjust verdict,” Habba said.

The bond was lowered by an appellate court from the $464 million figure to $175 million on March 25, hours after Trump missed a grace period deadline extended by New York Attorney General Letitia James, whose office brought the case.

James had indicated her office would pursue Trump’s assets if he failed to post bond.

“If he does not have funds to pay off the judgment, then we will seek judgment enforcement mechanisms in court, and we will ask the judge to seize his assets,” she said during a February interview with ABC News.

Attorneys for Trump wrote in a March 18 filing in the case that it was a “practical impossibility” for the defendants to secure the original, near half-billion dollar bond. They said he had been turned down by over 30 surety companies.

“Very few bonding companies will consider a bond of anything approaching that magnitude,” wrote the lawyers, Alina Habba, Clifford Robert, Christopher Kise and John Sauer. They noted that surety providers often require collateral up to 120% to guarantee the bond, driving the amount Trump might need over $500 million.

That filing, made on March 18, listed more than 30 companies the Trump Organization said it approached seeking the larger bond, all of whom declined. The one that ultimately provided Monday’s $175 million bond, Knight Specialty Insurance Company, was not on that list.