New York law is clear: Trump must appear in court
Former bodyguard Keith Schiller (left) and President Donald Trump (right). Image via Nicholas Kamm/AFP.

Typically, when someone is being sued they have to appear in court, but President Donald Trump's upcoming trial in New York might not include the defendant-in-chief.


The Washington Post reported Thursday that New York law is clear when it comes to a defendant being subpoenaed for trial testimony. His attorneys are telling him to ignore it, however.

Five Mexican protesters allege that as a candidate, Trump's 2015 security team assaulted them. The defendants include Trump, his company and security director Keith Schiller. The protesters had gone to protest the president's comments about Mexicans being "rapists" during his announcement speech.

According to court documents, two protesters were dressed in Ku Klux Klan-like costumes and they held signs reading, “Trump: make America racist again."

As director of Trump Organization security, Schiller confronted the men, took the signs from them and the men struggled. Schiller then violently struck one of the men, who was sent to the hospital.

The lawsuit was brought three months after the president announced he was running and the legal team was quick to tell the court they were "rejecting" the subpoena.

The protesters asked Bronx County Supreme Court Judge Fernando Tapia to demand Trump's attendance for the trial scheduled March 6, The Post said.

“The law gives plaintiffs a right to the testimony of every defendant in the case. By our motion today, we have asked the court to secure that right and affirm the principle that no one, including defendant Trump, is above the law,” said the protester's attorneys Roger Bernstein and Benjamin Dictor.

Trump's attorneys argued that he had nothing to do with the incident, but the judge ruled in August "that a jury could find that Trump 'authorized and condoned' the guards’ conduct." According to the judge, the decision was made based on the president's previous statements during a rally.

“Maybe he should have been roughed up because it was absolutely disgusting what he was doing,” Trump said at a Nov. 2015 rally.