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Giuliani bankruptcy judge frustrated with case, rebuffs attempt to challenge $148 million judgment

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Giuliani bankruptcy judge frustrated with case, rebuffs attempt to challenge $148 million judgment
News

News

Giuliani bankruptcy judge frustrated with case, rebuffs attempt to challenge $148 million judgment

2024-05-15 07:06 Last Updated At:07:10

The judge overseeing Rudy Giuliani's bankruptcy case said he was “disturbed” so little progress has been made in sorting out his finances, and refused Tuesday to lift a legal barrier that has kept the former New York City mayor from appealing a $148 million defamation judgment.

Giuliani declared bankruptc y in December after he was ordered to pay the staggering sum to two former election workers for spreading a false conspiracy theory about their role in the 2020 election.

Since then, Giuliani has missed deadlines to file financial disclosure reports. He hasn't succeeded in selling residences in New York and Florida. Last week, he was suspended from WABC Radio, where he had a daily show, over what the station called his repeated violation of a ban on discussing discredited 2020 election claims.

“They have done nothing. They sold nothing. They settled nothing," said Rachel Strickland, an attorney representing the election workers. She accused Giuliani of getting fired on purpose by “deliberately flouting his employer’s restrictions.”

“I agree with you,” U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Sean Lane responded. “And I am disturbed about the status of this case."

Attorneys for Giuliani said he has additional work lined up to bring in money, though they didn't say what kind of work that was. Giuliani's Manhattan apartment could soon be liquidated, they said. His attorneys said issues have been ironed out and necessary financial filings will also be made. Giuliani faces accusations from a slew of people who say he potentially owes them money.

“They finally have, I think, gotten things on track,” said his lawyer, Heath Berger.

The judge rejected a request from Giuliani, though, to lift an automatic stay so that he could pursue post-judgment litigation in the defamation case. Creditors' lawyers argued that doing so would delay the bankruptcy proceeding.

Lane also addressed a request from lawyers for the election workers that Giuliani be barred from making additional defamatory statements against them. While holding off on a decision, Lane said there was already a court decision on the matter and he was "not going to let this court be used as a place where parties can flout the requirements of the law.”

“Tell your client to stop," Lane told lawyers for Giuliani. "It's not complicated.”

Lawyers will meet with the judge again on Thursday to discuss the issue.

FILE - Former Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani speaks during a news conference outside the federal courthouse in Washington, Dec. 15, 2023. A New York bankruptcy judge rejected Giuliani's request to pursue an appeal of a $148 million defamation judgment for spreading lies about the the 2020 election and said he was “disturbed” by the lack of progress in the five-month-old case on Tuesday, May 14, 2024. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File)

FILE - Former Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani speaks during a news conference outside the federal courthouse in Washington, Dec. 15, 2023. A New York bankruptcy judge rejected Giuliani's request to pursue an appeal of a $148 million defamation judgment for spreading lies about the the 2020 election and said he was “disturbed” by the lack of progress in the five-month-old case on Tuesday, May 14, 2024. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A tightly contested race in Virginia between one of America's most conservative congressmen and a challenger endorsed by former President Donald Trump is too close to call, The Associated Press said Monday.

The AP issued an advisory saying that the margin separating U.S. Rep. Bob Good and state Sen. John McGuire is likely to remain within a margin of a single percentage point. That means the race is eligible for a recount under state law.

Good, who currently trails by more than 300 votes out of nearly 63,000 cast, has said he will seek a recount if the state electoral board certifies McGuire as the winner.

McGuire’s lead has actually grown slightly since early Wednesday morning.

Good on Monday also told former Trump adviser and right-wing podcaster Steve Bannon that he will be pursuing a legal challenge to block the certification of the count in the city of Lynchburg, the largest city in the 5th Congressional District and a Good stronghold.

“Lynchburg is the big key. That can’t be certified. There’s no confidence in Lynchburg’s results,” Good said.

Good and others have claimed that the city botched the vote count by accepting ballots from a drop box after election night.

In a statement Monday, the city registrar acknowledged a procedural error but said fewer than 10 ballots, if any, were affected.

The statement from the registrar’s office says the drop box, located inside the registrar’s office, was emptied out just before 1 p.m. on Election Day. But the box was not emptied again until Friday, June 21. Seven ballots were inside.

The registrar’s statement says staffers in the registrar’s office saw multiple ballots dropped off legally in the afternoon on Election Day but did not see any ballots placed in the box after that.

Those seven ballots have since been mixed in with another batch of ballots, and the registrar has said counting has been placed on hold while they consult with the Virginia Department of Elections on what to do next.

The State Department of Elections did not respond to an email Monday seeking comment.

McGuire, who claimed victory on election night, issued a statement Monday thanking Good for his service and suggesting that a recount or a legal challenge would be pointless and divisive.

“While I understand the desire to continue the fight, the outcome of this election will not change,” he said.

Both Good and McGuire are among Republicans who have raised concerns about election integrity in the wake of Trump’s false claims of voter fraud in his 2020 reelection defeat. Good was among more than 100 GOP House members who voted in January 2021 to object to the Electoral College count from states that Trump disputed.

In an election eve telephone rally with Trump last week, McGuire urged supporters to deliver him a margin of victory “too big to rig.”

If Good loses, he would be the first House incumbent to lose a primary challenge this year, with the exception of one race in which two incumbents faced off due to redistricting.

FILE - Rep. Bob Good, left, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, greets family members at a watch party in Lynchburg, Va.,, June 18, 2024. On Monday, June 24, 2024, The Associated Press said the race between Good and Sen. John McGuire was still too close to call. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley, File)

FILE - Rep. Bob Good, left, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, greets family members at a watch party in Lynchburg, Va.,, June 18, 2024. On Monday, June 24, 2024, The Associated Press said the race between Good and Sen. John McGuire was still too close to call. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley, File)

FILE - Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary in the state's 5th Congressional District, joins supporters, June 18, 2024, in Lynchburg, Va. On Monday, June 24, 2024, The Associated Press said the race between McGuire and Rep. Bob Good was still too close to call. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland, File)

FILE - Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary in the state's 5th Congressional District, joins supporters, June 18, 2024, in Lynchburg, Va. On Monday, June 24, 2024, The Associated Press said the race between McGuire and Rep. Bob Good was still too close to call. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland, File)

Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary in the state's 5th Congressional District, joins supporters Tuesday, June 18, 2024, in Lynchburg, Va. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland)

Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary in the state's 5th Congressional District, joins supporters Tuesday, June 18, 2024, in Lynchburg, Va. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland)

Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, speaks to supporters in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland)

Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, speaks to supporters in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland)

Supporter Phil Hamilton places campaign signs for Rep. Bob Good, a candidate in the Republican primary for the Virginia's 5th Congressional District, along Timberlake Road in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley)

Supporter Phil Hamilton places campaign signs for Rep. Bob Good, a candidate in the Republican primary for the Virginia's 5th Congressional District, along Timberlake Road in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley)

Rep. Bob Good, left, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, greets family members at a watch party in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley)

Rep. Bob Good, left, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, greets family members at a watch party in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley)

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