Judge scolds Giuliani for false claims about election workers during defamation trial #Judge #scolds #Giuliani #false #claims #election #workers #defamation #trial

WASHINGTON (AP) — The judge overseeing a Georgia election workers’ defamation case scolded Rudy Giuliani on Tuesday for comments made outside the courthouse in which he insisted his false claims about the women were true.

U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell warned Giuliani’s lawyer that the remarks his client made to reporters about Ruby Freeman and her daughter, Wandrea “Shaye” Moss when leaving the courthouse a day earlier amounted to “defamatory statements about them yet again.”

The judge appeared incredulous, asking Giuliani’s lawyer about the contradiction of his opening statements calling Freeman and Moss “good people” but then the former mayor repeating unfounded allegations of voter fraud.

“How are we supposed to reconcile that?” she asked the lawyer.

Giuliani’s lawyer, Joseph Sibley, conceded her point and told the judge he discussed the comments with his client, but added: “I can’t control everything he does.” He also argued that the mayor’s age and health concerns make long days in court challenging.

Giuliani has already been found liable in the case and previously acknowledged in court that he made public comments falsely claiming Freeman and Moss committed fraud while counting ballots.

The only issue remaining in the trial, which began on Monday, is the amount of damages, if any, Giuliani will have to pay the women.

Outside the courthouse on Monday, however, Giuliani told reporters: “When I testify, the whole story will be definitively clear that what I said was true, and that, whatever happened to them—which is unfortunate about other people overreacting—everything I said about them is true.”

Giuliani added that Moss and Freeman were “engaged in changing votes.” When a reporter pushed back, saying there was no proof of that, Giuliani replied: ““You’re damn right there is. … Stay tuned.”

The judge’s comments came after lawyers for the women filed court papers late Monday raising concerns that Giuliani and his lawyer were violating court orders with their comments.

Giuliani’s attorney also suggested during his opening statement that the defamation case could financially ruin his client, saying the amount of money the mother and daughter want in damages is the “civil equivalent of the death penalty.”

A prior court order prevents them from arguing that Giuliani is “insolvent, bankrupt, judgment proof, or otherwise unable to defend himself, comply with this Court’s orders, or satisfy an eventual judgment,” Freeman and Moss’ lawyers wrote.

#Judge #scolds #Giuliani #false #claims #election #workers #defamation #trial

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