Judge Arthur Engoron didn’t rule on the request, but indicated the trial will go on as scheduled Monday with Donald Trump Jr. returning to the stand as the first defense witness.
Trump’s lawyers had asked Engoron to cut the trial short and issue a verdict clearing Trump, his company and top executives including Trump Jr. of wrongdoing.
They made the request halfway through the trial of New York Attorney General Letitia James’ lawsuit, arguing the state had failed to prove its case. James alleges Trump and other defendants duped banks, insurers and others by inflating his wealth on financial statements.
Engoron said the defense’s arguments seeking what’s known as a directed verdict were “taken under advisement.” He did not address them further when he returned to court Thursday afternoon to rule on another matter.
In that ruling, Engoron gave Trump’s lawyers a victory, allowing them to call several expert witnesses in an attempt to refute testimony that Trump’s financial statements afforded him better loan terms, insurance premiums and were a factor in dealmaking.
The judge, who’s had a history of ruling against Trump, has signaled interest in seeing the trial through to its conclusion, asking defense lawyers for witness schedules and pegging closing arguments close to Christmas.