Onald Trump plans to testify before the Supreme Court over “completely untrue” allegations that he took part in “perverted” sexual acts and bribed Russian officials, the London court has heard.
The former US president is filing a data protection lawsuit against Orbis Business Intelligence – a consulting firm founded by former MI6 officer Christopher Steele – and is seeking damages for distress.
Mr. Steele, who previously headed the Russia division of the Secret Intelligence Service, was the author of the so-called Steele dossier, which included allegations that Mr. Trump had been “compromised” by Russia’s FSB intelligence service.
On Monday, the Supreme Court was told that Mr. Trump is making his case over two memos in the dossier that allege the former president attended “sex parties” in St. Petersburg and hosted “golden showers” with prostitutes in Moscow.
In testimony for the preliminary hearing, Trump, 77, called the allegations “completely untrue.”
“None of this ever happened. All of these false allegations are made in the two memoranda that are the subject of this allegation,” he continued.
Mr. Trump later claimed that the dossier contained “a number of inaccurate and unsubstantiated allegations” and that Orbis bore a “moral responsibility for its contents.”
His lawyer, Hugh Tomlinson KC, said Mr. Trump knew he had a legal responsibility to prove the allegations were false in this case and that he “intends to relieve himself of his burden by testifying before this court.” “.
In written statements, Mr. Tomlinson said Orbis was accused of unlawfully processing Mr. Trump’s personal data, causing him “severe distress and reputational harm.”
The court heard that Mr Trump accepts that Orbis is not responsible for publishing the dossier – as it was shared with and published by BuzzFeed – but claims his data was processed by the consultancy.
Mr Tomlinson later described Mr Trump as a “controversial figure”, adding: “He often expresses himself in very strong language… his interactions with the US legal system have been varied and varied.”
“None of this is relevant to the question of whether the personal data in question are accurate.”
But Orbis’ lawyers called for Mr. Trump’s lawsuit to be dismissed, telling the court it was brought “for the purpose of harassing Orbis and Mr. Steele and pursuing long-standing grievances.”
Antony White KC, representing the consulting firm, said in written submissions that the case had “no realistic prospect of success” and was filed too late.
He said: “The claim for damages is essentially based on reputational damage allegedly suffered by the plaintiff.
“This claim is barred by statute of limitations and because any reputational damage and resulting distress was alleged to have been caused by the BuzzFeed publication, for which plaintiff acknowledges that Orbis is not liable.”
Mr White said the dossier was never intended to be made public and all copies of the memos in Orbis’ possession were destroyed in 2017.
The lawyer later said that the case was filed by Mr. Trump to pursue a “revenge” against Orbis and Mr. Steele.
He continued: “Plaintiff has a deep and intense hostility toward Mr. Steele and Orbis, which is reflected in numerous abusive public statements he has made since BuzzFeed published the dossier in 2017.”
Mr. White said Mr. Trump has a “long history of repeatedly making frivolous, baseless and vexatious claims to antagonize and harass perceived enemies and others against whom he holds a grudge.”
However, in his testimony, the former president said that while he felt “harmed” by Mr. Steele, he was “pursuing a claim against the defendant in connection with the processing of inaccurate personal data, not against Mr. Steele in a personal capacity.”
The hearing before Judge Steyn is due to end on Tuesday, with a decision expected at a later date.