President Donald Trump is seeking more than 300,000 dollars in attorney fees after a federal judge in Los Angeles dismissed the defamation lawsuit filed by the adult-film star Stormy Daniels on free-speech grounds, Fox News informed.
Stephanie Clifford, who goes by the name of Stormy Daniels, filed a lawsuit against Trump in April based on a tweet in which the President rejected her claims of being threatened by a man in a Las Vegas parking lot, calling it a “total con job.”
“A sketch years later about a nonexistent man. A total con job, playing the Fake News Media for Fools (but they know it)!” Trump tweeted. He retweeted a side-by-side image comparing the sketch with a photo of Daniels’ husband.
Daniels’ attorney Michael Avenatti said that the tweet damaged her reputation by portraying her as a liar.
“The court agrees with Mr. Trump’s argument because the tweet in question constitutes ‘rhetorical hyperbole’ normally associated with politics and public discourse in the U.S.,” U.S. District Judge S. James Otero in Los Angeles said in a ruling Monday, as Bloomberg reported. “The First Amendment protects this type of rhetorical statement.”
The judge’s ruling also stated the Trump is “entitled to an award of his attorneys’ fees” against Daniels, the President’s attorney Charles Harder said in a statement to Fox News earlier this month.
Trump is seeking $341,559.50 in attorney’s fees from Daniels, according to a court filing on Monday by the President’s attorneys.
Daniels, who claims to have slept with President Donald Trump in 2006 when he was married, is also suing the President and his former personal lawyer Michael Cohen over a nondisclosure agreement she signed to keep quiet on the alleged affair. Trump has denied the accusation.
Trump and his former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, want the court to reject the litigation as moot.
Daniels first sued Trump and Cohen, who negotiated the agreement, so she could speak in public about the reported tryst without fear of reprisal. Cohen had threatened to sue her for $20 million.
Lawyers for Trump and Cohen now say the agreement with which they paid Daniels $130,000 not to speak publicly was not valid and they won’t sue her for breaking it.
Daniels said that the agreement should be invalidated due to the fact that there is only the signature from Cohen, but there is no signature from Trump.
Cohen pleaded guilty to campaign finance violations for arranging payments both to Daniels and to a former Playboy model to influence the election.