Court Battles

LinkedIn co-founder, Trump critic helped fund rape accuser E. Jean Carroll’s lawsuit

E. Jean Carroll’s rape case against former President Donald Trump has been funded by LinkedIn founder and noted Trump critic Reid Hoffman, according to newly-released court documents.

Carroll has alleged that Trump sexually assaulted her in the 1990s and sued under New York’s Adult Survivors Act, a new law which allows victims to sue for civil damages beyond the statute of limitations. Trump has denied the allegations.

Trump’s lawyers requested a one-month delay in the upcoming trial, scheduled to begin April 24, claiming that Carroll sought to hide Hoffman’s involvement and that it brings her credibility into question.

Judge Lewis Kaplan allowed an inquiry from the Trump lawyers but did not delay the trial date.

Carroll’s lawyers claim that Hoffman’s support is irrelevant to the case and that Hoffman offered his support almost a year after the lawsuit was first filed. They called the Trump attempts to delay the trial “his latest transparent effort to keep a jury from deciding Carroll’s claims.”

Hoffman, a billionaire, is a notable Democratic donor and Trump critic who heavily backed Hillary Clinton in 2016. In 2021, Hoffman teamed up with fellow megadonor George Soros to found an organization to battle disinformation.

Hoffman is a member of the “PayPal Mafia,” a group of tech entrepreneurs who made their start at PayPal in the 1990s. Notable members include Republican megadonor Peter Thiel and Elon Musk.

The rape case set to go to trial this month is Carroll’s second lawsuit brought against Trump. In 2019, she sued him for defamation over his response to her original sexual assault allegations, however that case has been caught up in appeals.

Carroll lawyers have sought to combine the two cases into a single trial, but that attempt was shut down by a federal judge last month.

In February, Trump offered to provide DNA for the case, but that attempt was also shut down by the courts, calling it a “delay tactic.”

Tags Donald Trump E. Jean Carroll Reid Hoffman

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