May 18, 2022

The Queens County Citizen

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Tax fraud | The Trump organization and the CFO do not admit guilt

Tax fraud |  The Trump organization and the CFO do not admit guilt

(New York) The Trump organization has been indicted on 15 charges of tax evasion by former U.S. president and its chief financial officer Allen Weiselberg, who said Thursday they were “not guilty.” “Politically motivated”.

Catherine TRIOMPHE
France Media Agency

Allen Weiselberg, 73, a strong supporter of former President Donald Trump, arrived in court at 2:15 p.m., with his arms and hands behind his back.

He was released on September 20, about 15 minutes after handing over his pending new trial.

One of the prosecutors is Carrie Dunne, Donald Trump’s company – which includes golf clubs, luxury hotels and other real estate assets – and he has set up a “vast and daring system of illicit payments” since 2005.

According to the indictment, which was released after the trial, Mr. Weiselberg and his company “systematically manipulated themselves” to pay taxes, underestimate the wages of subsequent and unspecified employees. “Significantly less” than the amount actually paid.

Mr Weiselberg is accused of deliberately hiding 7 1.7 million benefits from tax authorities between 2005 and 2021.

Unclaimed incentives include leasing his apartment in Manhattan’s Upper West Side, two Mercedes for him and his wife, or cash for his vacation.

This prudent man, who officially pays 40,940,000 a year between 2011 and 2018, is accused of lying about not living in New York City, in order to avoid taxes.

The most serious of the charges against him could face up to 15 years in prison, legal experts said.

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“Witch hunt”

Before and after the trial, Alan Futurfas, one of Trump’s lawyers, described the case as “politically motivated”. A spokesman for the agency confirmed that Mr Weiselberg was being used as a “pawn” by prosecutors […] To harm the former president. ”

The two prosecutors leading the case – Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance and New York State Attorney Letitia James, two Democrats – in a statement, accused Donald Trump of “continuing their witch hunt”, an expression he used during his tenure in relation to his opponent.

Photo by John Minchillo, AP

Prosecutor Cyrus Vance

“It will divide our country like never before,” said the former Republican president, who continues to be vague on the new presidential candidacy in 2024. Carrie Dunne, one of the prosecutors, vehemently denied the allegations.

“Contrary to what the company claims, this is not a standard business practice,” Dunne told the hearing. “They were orchestrated by executives at the highest levels of the organization, who benefited financially by gaining covert growth.”

Trump has escaped for now

The first results of an investigation launched two years ago by Cyrus Vance with the help of Letitia James are allegations made public on Thursday.

Mr Vance, in particular, has struggled for months to obtain the tax returns of the former New York Magnet, the first American president to publish them since the 1970s.

The former Republican president, who held his first major rally last week after leaving Washington, was not caught during this time or by any of his family members.

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But Letitia James warned after hearing that “the investigation will continue, we will follow where they take us.”

AFP Beverly Moran, a law professor at Vanderbilt University in Tennessee, said the allegations should be a blow to his business, even if he did not frame himself.

When a company is charged, the banks that finance it usually ask you to repay the debt. She said because the Trump organization is heavily in debt, it can “be put in the most difficult financial position.”

Donald Trump, in 2016, became the first billionaire to enter the White House. When he left for Washington, he refused to sell his business as recommended by ethics experts and gave the reins to Allen Weiselberg and his two eldest sons, Donald Jr. and Eric Trump.

One of the lawyers for the Trump organization, after being warned of the allegations coming up this week, agreed that Mr Trump was “not out of the woods yet.”