Trump to provide written answers under oath in defamation lawsuit

Trump to provide written answers under oath in defamation lawsuit

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President Trump is slated to provide written answers under oath later this month in a defamation lawsuit brought by a former “Apprentice” contestant, a Friday court filing said.

The defendant, Summer Zervos, filed the defamation lawsuit in early 2017 after Trump called her a liar for claiming he groped and forcibly kissed her at a hotel in 2007. Trump has denied the claims.

Zervos, who owns a restaurant in California, said Trump’s denial has hurt her credibility and ability to make a living.

Trump’s lawyers agreed to exchange “written answers and objections” to formal questions no later than Sept. 28, the Washington Post reported, citing the document that was filed with the New York State Supreme Court.

Providing false answers after being sworn would open the president to perjury charges. Trump’s lawyers have unsuccessfully tried to circumvent the stipulation several times this year, the Post reported.

Mariann Wang, Zervos’ lawyer, declined the Post’s request to comment on the agreement. Marc Kasowitz, President Trump’s lawyer, did not immediately respond to a request for comment, according to the paper.

An Aug. 29 letter released Friday indicated Wang had written to Judge Jennifer G. Schecter saying that Trump’s lawyers and the Trump Organization were blocking her document requests, the Post reported.

“There can be no question here that Defendant has the practical ability — and indeed, the obligation — to have directed the preservation and collection of responsive documents at the Trump Organization,” Wang reportedly wrote.

Zervos’s case is one of several pending against the president. Adult-film star Stormy Daniels, whose case has been more highly publicized, is trying to invalidate a 2016 nondisclosure agreement that prevents her from speaking about a supposed sexually relationship with the president 12 years ago.

But Daniels’ case has been delayed as federal authorities investigate Trump’s former attorney, Michael Cohen, who pleaded guilty last month to violating federal campaign finance laws when he paid Daniels “hush money” to keep quiet about the alleged affair. 

Bradford Betz is an editor for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @bradford_betz.

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