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Trump defends Access Hollywood band during angry testimony in rape trial

Former President Donald Trump defended his “grab her pussy” comments in recorded testimony presented to jurors during a rape trial Thursday.

Though Trump did not appear in person at the civil case filed by writer E. Jean Carroll, attorneys played video from testimony last October in which the former president mocked the attorney who questioned him and stood by the infamous comments He made an Access Hollywood tape in 2005, on which he can say, “If you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything… grab her by the pussy.”

“Historically, that’s true with stars,” Trump said in the statement about the recorded comments, adding, “If you look at the last million years, I think that’s largely true. Not always, but largely true. Unfortunately or fortunately.”

“And you think you’re a star,” Carroll’s attorney Roberta Kaplan asked.

“I think so, yes,” Trump replied.

In this courtroom sketch, the videotape of Donald Trump's testimony is played on a large screen for the jury (bottom left) on Wednesday, with Justice Lewis Kaplan presiding in Manhattan Federal Court.
In this courtroom sketch, the videotape of Donald Trump’s testimony is played on a large screen for the jury (bottom left) on Wednesday, with Justice Lewis Kaplan presiding in Manhattan Federal Court.

Court sketch by Elizabeth Williams via Associated Press

Carroll has accused Trump of raping her In a fitting room at Bergdorf Goodman department store in New York City in the mid-1990s. She has sued for personal injury and defamation and is seeking unspecified damages. Trump has vehemently denied the attack, calling Carroll a “crazy job” in the recorded statement and saying the rape “didn’t happen.”

“It’s the most ridiculous, disgusting story. It was just made up,” he added.

“You wouldn’t be my choice either, to be honest,” Trump said at the time. “I wouldn’t be interested in you at all.”

At the beginning of the testimony, Trump was shown a photo of Carroll and himself at a party, but he mistook the author for his ex-wife Marla Maples, saying, “This is Marla…. This is my wife.” Carroll’s attorney asked if all three women he was married to were his “type.”

The trial ended in its second week on Thursday as the defense rested their case. Trump has claimed he would not appear in person and has spent time in Ireland golfing. But he hinted Thursday that he could be back in New York soon to “go back to a woman who made a false accusation against me and I have a judge who is extremely hostile.”

The court gave Trump until 5 p.m. Sunday filing a motion to have his case retried “just to testify”.

“If he changes his mind, I’ll at least consider it,” US District Judge Lewis Kaplan said.

The closing arguments are scheduled for Monday.

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