Amidst a long litany legal issues for former President Donald Trump, he seems to have just lost the first skirmish – this one in his ongoing battle against New York’s attorney general, Letitia James. James’ office filed a fraud suit, suing Trump for $250 million nearly a month ago. Now, after dodging due process for that length of time, Trump has finally been officially served with the 220-page suit, through his own attorney, Alina Habba,”by sending in electronic mail a message containing a secure cloud link to pdf attachments of all the documents,” according to James’ court filings.
The lawsuit alleges that the former President’s company, Trump Organization, has a pattern going back decades of fraudulently exaggerating the company’s worth.
The suit asks for quarter-billion dollars in penalties and to ban Trump and his family from doing business in the state of New York.
Representatives for Trump and son Eric Trump,who is an executive vice president for the company, had evaded being served since the suit was filed on September 21.
James complained in another court filing that Habba as well as Eric Trump’s attorney, Clifford Robert, failed to reply to emails she sent them that same day the suit was filed, requesting confirmation that they were the people to accept service on the Trump’s behalf.
Other members of Trump’s family, like wife Melania and son Don Jr., on the other hand, saw their lawyers accept the service immediately.
The silent treatment from Donald and Eric Trump came despite Habba and Robert having submitted notices to the court in late September — called “notices of appearance” — declaring themselves to be attorneys of record for the case.
The apparent runaround led James’ office to accuse Trump’s side of “gamesmanship.” Last week, she sought a court order that allowed her to simply email the papers to Habba and Robert and be done with it.
The Manhattan judge handling the case quickly agreed, ruling Thursday that emailing the papers to the two lawyers would suffice as service to both Trumps. James fired off those emails the same day, their Monday filing said.
Habba and Robert have not responded to Insider’s requests for comment on the delay in service of the lawsuit.