Takeaways and new details from the New York AG's investigation into Trump's business empire

纽约 New York Attorney General Letitia James laid out new, specific details about what her office believes to bemisleading or fraudulentfinancial statements from former President Donald Trump’s business empire in a late-night court filing 星期二.

The new filing seeks to compel the testimony of Trump, 小唐纳德·特朗普. and Ivanka Trump as part of her civil investigation into the Trump Organization.
James alleged since initiating the investigation in 2019 that her office has uncovered “重大” 证据 “indicating that the Trump Organization used fraudulent or misleading asset valuations to obtain a host of economic benefits, including loans, insurance coverage, and tax deductions.
    Trump has denied wrongdoing, and a spokesperson for the Trump Organization said in a statement that theallegations are baseless and will be vigorously defended.
      Here are some key insights from the attorney general’s filing:

        Trump’s penthouse value may have been inflated

        在 2015, Trump reported the value of his Trump Tower penthouse at $ 327 百万, derived from an assessment that the apartment was 30,000 平方英尺. 但在 2017, the value of the penthouse was changed to $ 116.8 百万, reflecting its accurate square footage of 10,996.39 平方英尺.
          詹姆士’ office said Trump Org. CFO Allen Weisselberg admitted the value had been overstated in earlier years.
          The valuations of Mr. Trump’s triplex in the 2015 和 2016 were overstated almost by a factor of three, as Mr. Weisselberg conceded in his testimony. 先生. Weisselberg admitted that this amounted to an overstatement ofgive or take” $ 200 百万,” according to the filing.
          (分别, Weisselberg has been charged with 15 counts of fraud. He has pleaded not guilty.)

          40 华尔街

          在 2010, as part of a loan modification, appraisers valued Trump’s stake in this commercial building at $ 200 百万. That appraisal, based on the terms of the ground lease, was revised to $ 260 百万 2012.
          But it’s alleged Trump valued the building much higher on his financial statements.
          During the same period, 先生. Trump presented a value for 40 Wall Street on his Statements of Financial Condition of $ 601.8 百万 2010, $ 524.7 百万 2011, $ 527.2 百万 2012, 和 $ 530.7 million in 2013,the New York attorney general alleged. The values differed from the Trump Organization’s own contemporaneous budgets, according to the filing.

          ‘He did not want things put in writing

          詹姆士’ office alleges that the Trump Organization had a pattern of not putting things in writing.
          One witness, described in the filing as representing Trump in the lower Hudson Valley where his Seven Springs estate and numerous golf courses are located, testified that he spoke directly with Trumpabout once a week.” 和, according to the filing, “he ‘seldomcommunicated in writing with Trump because Mr. Trump stated to him ‘that he did not want things put in writing in communications between us.'
          Trump’s long-time tax attorney Sheri Dillon, who advised Trump on the Seven Springs estate, wrote in an email to an associate working with her about an appraisal being conducted by Cushman and Wakefieldto ‘call [Cushman appraiser] Tim [Barnes] and advise him to limit substantive emails with Scott Blakely (engineer) and instead use the phone to the extent possible (want to avoid creating discovery unnecessarily),'” according to the filing.
          In a second email to the same associate and included in the filing, Dillon wrote, “Please use a fresh email when communicating with appraisers so that we avoid to the extent possible, email chains.
          The same associate also testified that he inserted comments on the draft of an appraisal using Microsoft Word track changes but instead of emailing the document, printed it out with the track changes and mailed it to the appraiser, which he did as part of the practice ofavoiding email.

          Trump’s file cabinet

          Trump has said he does not use email. 詹姆士’ office said they learned from witnesses that Trump kept hard copies of documents and used sticky notes to communicate with employees. They said a file cabinet pertaining to Trump’s records was never searched to comply with a subpoena.
          This file was never searched because the Trump Organization determined, improbably, that Mr. Trump was not involved in the preparation of his own financial statements,” 他们写.

          500 问题

          In depositions, the attorney general says 埃里克·特朗普 and Weisselberg answered few questions before asserting their Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination to more than 500 questions each.
          Individuals have a constitutional right against self-incrimination in criminal cases. In a civil case, a judge can instruct a jury that they can draw an adverse inference against an individual for declining to answer questions.
          Trumpslawyers are trying to block the subpoenas for Trump, 小特朗普. and Ivanka Trump, alleging James is trying to end run the grand jury process because her office is involved in the criminal investigation led by the Manhattan district attorney.

          Civil charges are possible by April 30

            Last Fall, during an ongoing dispute over the Trump Organization turning over documents, particularly related to those maintained by the former president, the Trump Organization agreed to extend, 要么 “收费” in legal parlance, the litigation beyond the statute of limitation, with an option that would allow the attorney general to extend it again until April 30, 2022.
            James exercised that option, indicating that late April may be a real deadline for when the state would move to file civil charges, if warranted, unless a further tolling agreement is reached.

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