(USNewsMag.com) – On Jan. 11, police responded to the Long Island home of New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur F. Engoron, who is overseeing the bank fraud case against former President Donald Trump, following a bomb threat.
The bomb squad and over a half dozen police cars showed up at his home to investigate the threat, which stated multiple “fertilizer bombs” were located around Engoron’s home.
Officers first responded to the home around 5:30 a.m. Jan. 11 for a “swatting incident,” according to a Nassau County Police Department spokesperson. “Swatting” is when a prank call is made to police making a false report of a crime in progress at a specific location. Police then respond to the scene without knowing the call is false. The spokesperson stated the threat was “deemed unfounded,” and an “active investigation” remains ongoing.
According to court spokesman Al Baker, security around the court would be increased following the threat against Engoron. The increase caused a delay in lawyers and journalists being processed through security to enter the court. Also, Engoron did not arrive at the courthouse until 9:30 a.m., as police did not clear him to leave his house until 8 a.m.
The threat came just hours before closing arguments began in the trial for the case brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James against Trump. The lawsuit alleges Trump and his family inflated the values of their properties, defrauding banks and investors. She is seeking at least $250 million in restitution. The trial does not have a jury, and Engoron will decide what penalties the Trump Organization will face.
Trump has denied any wrongdoing in the case and called it a witch hunt.
This is not the first time threats have been made against Engoron and his judicial staff. A transcription of the threats is about 275 single-spaced pages long, according to a New York court security officer in an affidavit filed earlier this year.
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