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‘I gotta lose some weight,’ Trump says during fraud case appearance

By Jake Beardslee · December 7, 2023

In brief…

  • Trump remarks "I gotta lose some weight" while viewing courtroom sketch at fraud trial
  • Trial alleges Trump's company manipulated property values to attain better financing
  • Trump due back on witness stand Monday as defense argues no intentional fraud
Donald Trump commented on his weight while attending his company's civil fraud trial in New York, which resumes with his testimony on Monday.  Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America/Wikimedia

Former President Donald Trump had a candid moment while appearing at his ongoing civil fraud trial in New York on Thursday. Upon viewing a courtroom sketch by artist Isabelle Brourman, Trump remarked, “I gotta lose some weight.”

The 77-year-old’s 2019 physical exam found him to be clinically obese at 243 pounds, though his physician at the time insisted he was in good health.

Outside the courtroom, Trump railed against the trial, calling it a “fraud” and a “witch hunt.” He has repeatedly claimed he is the victim of political targeting. Inside the courtroom, however, Trump appeared to be in lighter spirits as he critiqued the artists capturing his image.

“I gotta lose some weight,” Trump said after seeing Brourman’s sketch, as relayed by the artist herself. The former president also viewed work by artist Jane Rosenberg inside the courtroom.

Trump’s adult son, Donald Trump Jr, similarly showed interest in Rosenberg’s illustrations during his own testimony last month. “Make me look sexy,” he told the artist lightheartedly.

The ongoing civil case alleges that Trump’s company manipulated the value of its properties to attain better financing terms from banks and insurers. The prosecution argues this amounted to fraud.

Presiding Judge Arthur Engoron has already ruled decisively on the matter. He determined that Donald Trump and his adult children were involved in altering financial statements in order to deceive banks and insurance companies into offering better loan and insurance rates, according to a Reuters report.

Trump is due to return to the witness stand again on Monday as the defense tries to make its case. Lawyers for the former president argue the Trump Organization did not willfully distort financial statements as alleged.

The trial kicked off in October and is just one of several high-stakes legal situations Trump currently faces. The outcome of the cases could impact the former president’s recently announced 2024 White House bid.