Alina Habba Rages Over Letitia James’ Shoes

Alina Habba Rages Over Letitia James’ Shoes

Donald Trump’s attorney Alina Habba hit out at New York Attorney General Letitia James on Friday, claiming that she took her shoes off while in court during the former president’s civil fraud trial.

James sued Trump, his two adult sons, Donald Jr. and Eric, the Trump Organization and two firm executives, Allen Weisselberg and Jeff McConney, in September 2022. Judge Arthur Engoron, who oversaw the trial, found that Trump inflated his assets to get more favorable business loans. Late last year into early January, a trial was held to determine how much Trump and his associates would pay in damages. Trump, the current GOP frontrunner in the 2024 presidential election, has maintained his innocence in the case and claimed it was politically motivated.

On Friday, Engoron ordered the former president to pay roughly $355 million in damages and banned him from serving as the director of any New York corporation for three years. The former president vowed to appeal the ruling and described Engoron as “a crooked New York state judge.”

Speaking on the penalties Trump now faces, the former president’s lawyer Christopher Kise told Newsweek on Friday the court “imposed a draconian and unconstitutional fine and a corporate ‘death penalty’ on President Trump, his family, and the extraordinary global business empire he developed over a lifetime of hard work and achievement. Hard to imagine a more unfair process and hard to believe this is happening in America.”

Alina Habba and Letitia Jones
Donald Trump’s lawyer Alina Habba is seen on December 7, 2023, in New York City. New York Attorney General Letitia James speaks at her office in New York on Friday. During an appearance on Fox…

James Devaney/Timothy A. Clary/AFP/GETTY

Trump is facing a string of criminal cases, which could have a major impact in the upcoming election campaign. The former president, meanwhile, has maintained his innocence in all the cases.

Speaking to Fox News host Sean Hannity on Friday, Habba hit out at the New York attorney general and claimed: “Ms. James had her shoes off in court. Let’s not forget that.”

She added: “I called it out in the closing argument, but it’s true. She had a Starbucks coffee in her hand, she wasn’t doing work, she wasn’t sitting at the council chamber, she wasn’t sitting at the council table, she was in the back with her shoes off and a coffee and at the end of the day we’re sitting there going ‘this is the state of our country.’

“AG’s [attorney generals] are so comfortable in court that they know that they don’t even have to do the job, they don’t have to do the work, they’re going to let people do it. They’re going to sit there and they’re going to win. That’s a problem.”

A clip of Habba’s comments was shared to X, formerly Twitter, by the “Acyn” account which shares video from U.S. politics. As of Saturday morning, the clip has been viewed over 215,000 times.

Newsweek contacted James’ office by email at 7 a.m. ET on Saturday. This article will be updated if it wishes to comment.

Habba also criticized James during the civil trial for allegedly taking her shoes off in court during her five minute closing statement in January.

Gesturing at the New York attorney general, she said at the time: “I turned around this morning and I looked back; her shoes were off and she has a Starbucks coffee.”

While the trial was ongoing, Habba launched a number of personal attacks on James, who she accused of “trying to kill the Trump family, their organization and the presidency” at a conference hosted by conservative organization Turning Point USA in December.

Speaking at a press conference, James welcomed Friday’s verdict and said that “there cannot be different rules for different people in this country, and former presidents are no exception.”

In Engoron’s judgement on Friday, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump were fined $4 million each and were barred from doing business in New York for two years.

Ivanka Trump, the former president’s eldest daughter, had initially been listed as a defendant, but the case against her was dropped in June 2023 as a result of a statute of limitations.

However, Engoron still sharply criticized Ivanka in his ruling and said: “She consistently denied recalling the contents of documentary evidence that confirmed that she actively participated in events, even after she was confronted with the evidence.”