Donald Trump Ordered to Pay Six-Figure Legal Fees to British Company After Failed Lawsuit Over 'Steele Dossier'

By Jace Dela Cruz

Mar 08, 2024 07:11 AM EST

Former President Donald Trump was ordered to pay six-figure legal fees to a British company he sued over claims in the "Steele dossier."

Donald Trump Ordered to Pay Legal Fees of $382,000 to British Company

Citing court documents released Thursday, the Associated Press reported that a London judge ordered Donald Trump to pay 300,000 pounds ($382,000) in legal fees to Orbis Business Intelligence, a firm co-founded by former British spy Christopher Steele.

PALM BEACH, FLORIDA - MARCH 05: Republican presidential candidate, former President Donald Trump arrives for an election-night watch party at Mar-a-Lago on March 5, 2024 in West Palm Beach, Florida. Sixteen states held their primaries and caucuses today as part of Super Tuesday.
(Photo : Win McNamee/Getty Images)

The former president sued the company for allegedly making "scandalous" false claims that harmed his reputation. However, Judge Karen Steyn junked the case last month, saying it was "bound to fail" as there were "no compelling reasons to allow the claim to proceed to trial."

Steele, who once oversaw the Russia desk for Britain's Secret Intelligence Service, also known as MI6, before retiring in 2009 and founding Orbis, was reportedly paid by Democrats for research on Trump's ties to Russia. 

The so-called Steele dossier, compiled in 2016, contained allegations that Trump conspired with Moscow to win the 2016 election and his sexual activity with prostitutes while visiting Russia, which stirred controversy and political turmoil. 

No external sources have substantiated the allegations. In 2017, BuzzFeed leaked and published the dossier without Steele's or Orbis' permission. Trump sued Orbis, saying the dossier was wholly fabricated and the British company had violated British data protection laws.

Trump's legal team previously claimed that the former president "suffered personal and reputational damage and distress" due to inaccurate claims in the dossier.

However, in her February 1 ruling, Steyn sided with Orbis, which said the lawsuit should be dismissed as it was filed too late and the report was never meant to be made public.

Days later, the judge issued an order cutting the amount of legal bills Orbis claimed it incurred, which is 634,000 pounds ($809,000), by more than 50% since there had only been a one-day hearing.

Trump also sued Steele in a Florida court but was dismissed in 2022. The former president has faced several defeats in court in recent months. 

READ NEXT: Donald Trump, Other TMTG Bosses Accused in New Lawsuit of Trying to 'Drastically Dilute' Shares of Co-Founders 

Donald Trump Loses Bid to Delay $83.3 Million Defamation Judgment

Donald Trump recently lost a defamation case in which a jury ordered him to pay complainant journalist E. Jean Carroll $83.3 million. In a civil fraud case ruling, the former president was also ordered to pay $355 million

On Thursday, a New York judge rejected Trump's request to delay paying the $83.3 million civil defamation judgment, CNBC reported.

That means Trump must pay Carroll or post a bond or assets as collateral against the judgment by Monday while appealing the verdict in January that he, as president, defamed her after she accused him of rape in 2019.

All these rulings, including the British court case, could cost Trump all his available cash.

READ MORE: Donald Trump, Unable to Pay Full $454 Million Bond Amount, Offers to Post $100 Million in Civil Fraud Case But Appellate Judge Denies It

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