A federal judge has approved a $25 million settlement President Donald Trump agreed to late last year in a bid to head off a civil fraud trial over his Trump University real estate seminar program.
U.S. District Court Judge Gonzalo Curiel issued a 31-page ruling Friday deeming the deal fair and overruling claims from some former Trump University students that they should get larger payments or be allowed to drop out altogether in a bid to force Trump into a trial.
Under the settlement, former Trump University students are expected to get 80 percent to 90 percent of what they paid — typically about $1,500 for a three-day seminar or $35,000 for an in-depth mentorship program.
During the presidential campaign, Trump repeatedly vowed not to settle the case. He also attacked the San Diego-based Curiel’s pretrial rulings and accused him of bias based on his Latino heritage, calling the judge “Spanish” although he was born in Indiana.
With jury selection set to begin in one of the cases shortly after Thanksgiving last year, Trump agreed to the $25 million settlement, which also involved a $4 million payment to resolve another suit brought by New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.