Former New Jersey Superior Court Judge Andrew Napolitano told Newsmax "it's a bit of a mystery" why former President Donald Trump chose to attend the beginning of a civil fraud trial Monday in New York.
Trump has said he will face a "sham" accusation that he fraudulently inflated the value of his properties and other assets.
"It's a bit of a mystery as to why he wants to be there other than perhaps because he is Donald Trump, and he may want to just look into the eyes of the judge in this case," Napolitano said on Monday's "Wake Up America."
"This is a non-jury trial, so everything, the facts as well as the law, will be decided by one person, this judge."
New York state Judge Arthur Engoron last week found that Trump and his family business fraudulently inflated the value of his properties and other assets to suit their business needs.
Trump and the other defendants have argued that they never committed fraud.
"Trump's response is, 'Wait a minute. Nobody lost a nickel. Nobody complained. The banks that you say I cheated got paid back in full. They made money. I made money. Everybody's happy,'" Napolitano told co-hosts Alison Maloni and Jon Glasgow.
"But New York has a statute that permits the attorney general of the state to sue people who have defrauded banks even if the banks didn't lose any money, and that's what Letitia James has done."
Glasgow asked Napolitano whether Trump can get a fair trial.
"We have a system in New York, Jon, of which I've been harshly critical, and that is where the prosecutors and the judges run for office," Napolitano said. "And so, they identify Republican or Democrat. In this case, the attorney general ran for office as a Democrat, saying, 'I'm going to get Trump.' In this case the judge ran for office, not mentioning Trump, but as a Democrat.
"The better system, of course, is where judges and prosecutors are apolitical and are appointed by the governor confirmed by the Senate. That's not what we have here. Can he get a fair trial? According to him, he cannot, that the deck is stacked against him, and that's why we have appeals, but it's going to be a very expensive trial and a very expensive appeal."
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