The top clerk for New York Justice Arthur Engoron, Allison Greenfield, appears to have violated judicial rules preventing officers of the court from making excessive political donations, Breitbart News has learned.
What’s more, it appears Engoron was advised of Greenfield’s violations in a 72-page complaint addressed to his court via email that was also filed with the New York State Bar Association the same day he decided to issue a gag order against former President Donald Trump in his case currently playing out in Engoron’s Manhattan courtroom. Engoron has subsequently fined Trump a total of $15,000 for two alleged violations of that gag order preventing the former president from criticizing his principal law clerk.
But the evidence against Greenfield is astounding as laid out in the complaint that a third party filed against her. Such complaints are usually confidential, but the person who filed it—a Wisconsin man named Brock Fredin who runs a Twitter account called @JudicialProtest exposing such conflicts—published the entire complaint online.
“My name is Brock Fredin and I operate the Twitter account @JudicialProtest,” Fredin wrote in the Oct. 3, 2023, complaint sent to Engoron. “I write with respect to the blatantly unethical and partisan conduct of Your Honor’s Principal Law Clerk Allison Greenfield, the Court’s ‘Gag Order’ issued today concerning President Trump’s retweeting of my tweet about Ms. Greenfield and Senator Chuck Schumer taken at a Chelsea Reform Democrat Club brunch and the overly apparent appearance of impropriety in the above-referenced matter with respect to Ms. Greenfield’s repeated partisan political and Democrat activities while employed as a law clerk. Given that President Trump’s post at-issue today was a re-tweet of my original tweet on the @JudicialProtest account, the Court’s order directing President Trump to remove it is a direct attack on my First Amendment rights (as well as President Trump’s), particularly since the Court asserted on the record that my tweet was a ‘personal attack’ on Ms. Greenfield rather than a post exposing and criticizing the misconduct of a public official. I am consequently an interested party and submit this letter as such. To be clear, though, this letter and its contents are not a ‘personal attack’ on Ms. Greenfield. Rather, this letter contains receipts and raises serious ethical violations as to her political speech and activities involving the Democrat Party while employed as your law clerk that undoubtedly create an appearance of impropriety in People v. Trump et al.”
The 72-page complaint, is available on a website it appears Fredin created to make it public. Therefore, since the complainant released it, its contents are now publicly-available information. Throughout the complaint, it details significant political activity that Greenfield—the top clerk for Justice Engoron—has engaged in, including close relationships with top New York Democrats, including U.S. Senate Majority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and now former Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY). It also details several efforts she engaged in as a Democrat Party organizer, canvassing for party officials and working to elect Democrats to office.
More importantly, the complaint notes that Greenfield has engaged in giving political donations to Democrat candidates and causes in excess of the amount of donations that court officials in New York are allowed to give on an annual basis. Moreover, it also reveals that she was endorsed by Democrats while running to be a New York Civil Court Judge while the case was pending.
New York ethics rules prohibit court officials like Greenfield from giving in excess of $500 in the aggregate in a particular calendar year in political donations. The rules, which appear on the court system’s website, state that a “judge shall prohibit members of the judge’s staff who are the judge’s personal appointees from engaging in the following political activity.” The second point under that subheading says that prohibited conduct for judicial staff includes:
…contributing, directly or indirectly, money or other valuable consideration in amounts exceeding $500 in the aggregate during any calendar year to all political campaigns for political office, and other partisan political activity including, but not limited to, the purchasing of tickets to political functions, except that this $500 limitation shall not apply to an appointee’s contributions to his or her own campaign. Where an appointee is a candidate for judicial office, reference also shall be made to appropriate sections of the Election Law.
This year and last year, Greenfield apparently exceeded that $500 threshold. Greenfield began as Justice Engoron’s principal law clerk in 2019—so she has been in this position for several years and in the two most recent years, 2022 and 2023, she violated the ethics rules for judicial staff.
In 2022 alone, Greenfield gave thousands of dollars in donations. The donations, which can be found in New York’s elections database, total several thousand dollars. She gave $200 to the Four Freedoms Democratic Club in New York on May 2, 2022. She gave $175 to the Chelsea Reform Democratic Club in New York on April 5, 2022—and gave that group another $210 on July 25, 2022. She gave $350 to the West Side Democrats, Inc. in New York on June 15, 2022. She gave $50 more to New Yorkers For Alex Bores on Sept. 8, 2022. On Oct. 26, 2022, she gave another $50 to the Four Freedoms Democratic Club. On Sept. 12, 2022, Greenfield gave $100 to the Grand Street Democrats. On Dec. 2, 2022, Greenfield gave another $100 to Hell’s Kitchen Democrats. On Nov. 10, 2022, and on Nov. 21, 2022, Greenfield gave $250 each time to Downtown Independent Democrats. On Sept. 6, 2022, she gave $250 to Village Independent Democrats. On Dec. 27, 2022, Greenfield gave $500 to the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club. She gave that group another $500 spread over two $250 donations back on June 1, 2022, as well. On March 3, 2022, she gave $50 to Sivin for New York. On March 10, 2022, Greenfield gave another $100 to Sivin for New York. On May 15, 2022, she gave another $125 to Sivin for New York. She gave $25 to the New York County Democratic Committee on Feb. 13, 2022. She gave the New York County Democratic Committee another $50 on July 17, 2022.
That means that in 2022 alone, Greenfield gave $3,335 in political donations to Democrat candidates and causes in New York—more than six times the maximum allowed annually for court officials like herself to give.
In 2023, Greenfield gave $400 to the Four Freedoms Democratic Club on March 23—and two separate $100 each donations to Coda District Leaders on April 6 and May 17 respectively. She gave $20 to Friends of Kim on Feb. 6, 2023, and another $250 to the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club on May 30, 2023. On Jan. 26, 2023, Greenfield gave $56 to Harvey For New York and on July 21, 2023, she gave another $75 to the New York County Democratic Committee.
That means that in 2023 so far, Greenfield has given a total of $1,001 to Democrat candidates and causes—more than double the annual amount allowed by the ethics rules.
Engoron has not, in the public court proceedings this month, notified counsel for Trump that he received this complaint about Greenfield’s apparent ethics violations.
What, if anything, becomes of these alleged violations of the ethics rules by Greenfield remains to be seen. The judge in the case for now keeps siding with her, and even as recently as Thursday afternoon’s proceedings, according to live updates from New York Times reporters in the courtroom. Greenfield’s presence at Engoron’s side has been a centerpiece of the case as the trial plays out. The judge accused one Trump lawyer of “misogyny,” according to the Times, for raising questions about Greenfield.
“Justice Arthur Engoron is taking Christopher M. Kise, a lawyer for Mr. Trump, to task for disparaging his law clerk, Allison Greenfield. The judge says he thinks it may be a problem of misogyny and asks Kise not to mention his court staff again,” the New York Times’s Jonah Bromwich reported from the court. Kate Christobek, another Times reporter, added that Engoron threatened on Thursday to extend the gag order against Trump to his attorneys as well if they kept raising questions about Greenfield.
“Alina Habba, another of Mr. Trump’s lawyers, is now also complaining about Greenfield having improper influence on the judge, talking to him during proceedings. Habba says Greenfield’s conduct is a part of the record and the case. ‘I’m not going to stand by and allow it to happen,’ Habba says, asserting that because she is a woman, she is no misogynist,” Bromwich added in another Thursday update.