Trump must pay legal fees after a failed lawsuit over a ‘shocking and scandalous’ dossier

(Alex Brandon/Associated Press)

Trump must pay legal fees after a failed lawsuit over a ‘shocking and scandalous’ dossier


March 7, 2024

Former US President


Trump has been ordered to pay a six-figure legal bill to a company founded by a former British spy that he unsuccessfully sued for making what his lawyer called “shocking and outrageous” false claims that damaged his reputation .

A London judge who dismissed the case against Orbis Business Intelligence last month, saying it was doomed to failure, ordered Trump to pay legal fees of 300,000 pounds ($382,000), according to court documents released Thursday.

The British court case was one of the few in which Trump, who will almost certainly win the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, was not a candidate because he faces enormous legal problems at home.

Analyst who worked on the Trump-Russia dossier accused of lying

Trump is charged in four criminal cases and faces a civil complaint in U.S. courts. He lost a subsequent defamation case in which a jury found him liable for sexual abuse, and was ordered to pay $355 million following a fraud judgment against his companies.

In England he had gone on the offensive, suing Orbis, which was founded by Christopher Steele, who once headed the Russian branch of the British Secret Intelligence Service, also known as MI6.

Steele was paid by Democrats for research that included salacious allegations that the Russians could potentially use to blackmail Trump. The so-called Steele dossier, compiled in 2016, set off a political firestorm just before Trump’s inauguration with rumors and unconfirmed allegations that have since been largely discredited.

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Trump sued the company, saying:


the file was fake and Orbis had breached UK data protection law.

Lawyer Hugh Tomlinson said at a hearing in October that the former president suffered personal, reputational and distress over claims in the dossier that he took part in sex parties in St Petersburg and associated with sex workers in Moscow.

Tomlinson said the dossier contained shocking and scandalous claims about President Trump’s personal conduct and allegations that he paid bribes to Russian officials to further his business interests.

Orbis said the lawsuit should be dismissed because the report was never intended to be made public and was published by BuzzFeed without the consent of Steele or Orbis. It was also stated that the claim was submitted too late.

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Judge Karen Steyn, who sided with Orbis in her February 1 ruling, issued an order on costs a few days later.

She reduced the amount of legal bills. Orbis said it raised 634,000 pounds ($809,000) at more than 50%, saying it was high as there had only been a one-day hearing.

In 2022, a US federal judge in Florida dismissed a Trump lawsuit against Steele, 2016 Democratic rival Hillary Clinton and former top FBI officials, rejecting his claims that they helped fabricate the Russia investigation that largely of his government.

Brian Melley writes for the Associated Press


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