General Question

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Is Trump going to have to pay New York State a quarter of a Billion dollars for fraud?

Asked by Tropical_Willie (29681points) 1 week ago
51 responses
“Great Question” (5points)

Apparently the New York State AG has filed a suit against Trump, his company and his adult kids. The witnesses may include his ex-CFO and the accounting firm that dropped his company because his company refused to follow General Accepted Accounting Principles. The suit includes 200 plus pages of evidence and witness statements.

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Answers

HP's avatar

Ahhhh the shoes begin to drop.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

This civil charges there maybe criminal to follow.

SQUEEKY2's avatar

He is a victim, it’s all Hillary’s fault.
He is just an honest business tycoon trying to fraud the system for millions of dollars where is the harm in that?

WhyNow's avatar

Duh… the judgement has been passed? Not yet. Can we make it an even billion?

JLeslie's avatar

I’m not getting my hopes up.

Real estate has some of the best tax advantages out there.

If Trump has been playing the system to the point of fraud and other ilegal maneuvers, what the hell took so long? Forget that he was president. In fact, because he was president it’s problematic regarding politics in our country. How far back is the AG going?

Some of what the critics say in the news like Trump getting the benefit agriculture property tax because they bale hay on some land he owns, or that he buried his wife at an estate and gets a tax exemption for that in my opinion is not newsworthy, I don’t understand the outrage about it, and it’s not ilegal, but actually cheating on taxes is something else.

seawulf575's avatar

Letitia James is getting desperate. She campaigned on the goal of “Get Trump””. She has worked diligently towards that her entire term in office. Meanwhile crime is skyrocketing and her office is partially responsible for that. But let’s not look at that…we have to “Get Trump!”.

All of her criminal actions are falling by the wayside so now she is trying to “Get Trump” in a civil case. And all this, coincidentally, comes out as her popularity for her upcoming re-election is falling in recent polls. She’s still hoping to ride “Get Trump” into another term in office.

SQUEEKY2's avatar

And boo hoo poor little Don Father is just a victim, the mean AG is making him accountable for tax fraud how dare her doesn’t she know Trump is above the law?

RayaHope's avatar

Slimy scumbags need protection from the law. How DARE they hold him accountable for his shady tax evasion schemes! Didn’t his HATE rants on Twitter show how much he cares?! Haha

jca2's avatar

When I google “Letitia James popularity polls” the first thing that comes up is a Breitbart article and the rest that I get are from sites that have names like “citizens freedom press” and crap like that, so it’s obviously right wing sites trying to make it look like she’s desperate.

Anybody who knows anything about attorneys general and prosecutors knows that they don’t usually bring charges that are not going to stick, because it would make them look stupid if they did that a lot. Even with criminal cases, with your local prosecutors, they will try to cut a deal, or they will just drop the charges totally if they don’t think they’re going to win a case. They don’t want huge court cases with all the work and money and then to lose, which counts in statistics against them. Jeannine Pirro was a local prosecutor and a perfect example. She had big wins, lots of wins! Why? Because if she had a doubt about winning, she didn’t go to trial. So there’s that when you talk about Letitia James being desperate. Maybe she is, maybe she isn’t but she knows that since this is such a high profile case against Trump, she wouldn’t even go after him if she didn’t think she was going to win.

Here’s what I found from the NY Times in regards to the case:

Source: The New York times: (this is not the entire article):
“While Mr. Trump has often leveraged law enforcement scrutiny to portray himself as a political martyr and to raise money from his supporters, Ms. James’s lawsuit suggests that his success is the product of fraud and chicanery.

There was the Westchester County golf club valued as if it had charged hefty initiation fees that were never actually collected; the “cash” that Mr. Trump counted even though it belonged to one of his business partners; and the pretense that his Mar-a-Lago club and his golf course in Scotland could make money from building homes on the properties, even though the Trumps had agreed to limit such development.

In yet another example cited in the case, the Trump Organization starkly overvalued a group of rent-stabilized apartments in Trump Park, its building on Park Avenue — apartments that Donald Trump Jr. once described as being “the bane” of his existence. The apartments were appraised by an independent expert as being worth $750,000; the Trump Organization, in 2011 and 2012, instead valued them at almost $50 million.

The lawsuit compounds Mr. Trump’s extensive legal woes. He is facing a number of criminal investigations involving his conduct in the final weeks of his presidency. Last month, the F.B.I. searched Mar-a-Lago in an investigation into his removal of sensitive material from the White House; federal prosecutors are investigating his efforts to reverse his 2020 election loss; and a Georgia district attorney is conducting a criminal investigation into his potential election interference in the state.

The authorities in New York have been investigating Mr. Trump and his family business since 2018, when the Manhattan district attorney’s office opened an investigation. The following year, Ms. James’s civil inquiry began, and both offices began to zero in on the way that Mr. Trump’s company valued its assets.

As part of its investigation, the Manhattan district attorney pressured the Trump Organization’s chief financial officer, Allen H. Weisselberg, to turn on his longtime employer. When Mr. Weisselberg declined to cooperate, the office charged him with a yearslong scheme to avoid paying taxes on lucrative off-the-books perks.

The company was indicted as well and is scheduled to go to trial in October. Mr. Weisselberg, who is also a defendant in Ms. James’s suit, pleaded guilty to 15 felonies and agreed to testify at the trial, putting the company at a significant disadvantage. His lawyer, Mary E. Mulligan, declined to comment.

The Manhattan criminal investigation has not resulted in charges.. Early this year, the Manhattan district attorney, Alvin L. Bragg, instructed prosecutors to halt their effort to seek to indict Mr. Trump after he and some of his aides developed concerns about proving a criminal case. Such cases require a higher burden of proof than a civil case like the one Ms. James has filed.

While Ms. James does not have the authority to indict Mr. Trump, a footnote in the lawsuit said she provided her findings to the United States attorney’s office in Manhattan. It notes that the conduct detailed in the complaint appears to amount to bank fraud and false statements to a bank.

The lawsuit also argued that the financial statements violated “a host of state laws.” Asked about the possibility of state charges, Mr. Bragg said in a statement that the investigation into Mr. Trump and his company is “active and ongoing.

Ms. James’s lawsuit represents the culmination of a contentious yearslong civil investigation that Mr. Trump and his lawyers sought to thwart and delay at nearly every turn.

In April, a New York State judge held Mr. Trump in contempt of court for failing to fully comply with a subpoena from Ms. James seeking some of his personal records. The judge, Arthur F. Engoron, eventually lifted the contempt order, but only after Mr. Trump paid a $110,000 penalty.

Justice Engoron also ordered Mr. Trump, as well as Ivanka and Donald Trump Jr., to face questioning under oath from Ms. James’s investigators. (Eric Trump was previously questioned for the investigation, during which he repeatedly invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.)
Early this year, Ms. James disclosed in court papers that Mr. Trump’s longtime accounting firm cut ties with the former president and essentially retracted a decade’s worth of his financial statements. The firm, Mazars USA, compiled the financial statements based on information from Mr. Trump and his company, which “intended to mislead Mazars” by “concealing important information,” the lawsuit contends.

Mr. Trump’s lead accountant testified under oath in a deposition that he was “shocked by the size of the discrepancy” between the value for the rent-stabilized units at Trump Park listed in a 2010 outside appraisal and the value the Trump Organization assigned to the units.

In fighting the case, Mr. Trump’s lawyers are expected to highlight the disclaimer in his financial statements saying that Mazars had not audited the valuations. They also might argue that the Trump Organization submitted the statements to large financial institutions that conducted their own due diligence.
Addressing the defense that the Trump Organization’s practices were commonplace in the real estate world, Ms. James, at a news conference on Wednesday, argued that “this conduct cannot be brushed aside and dismissed as some sort of good-faith mistake.” The financial statements, she said, were “grossly inflated, objectively false and therefore fraudulent.”

Mr. Trump, his company and his family, she added, “should all be held accountable.”

jca2's avatar

Also, to add that it’s very easy to dismiss the person bringing the charges (Letitia James) and say “oh, she’s just desperate. She is losing in the polls. This is a political act.” I don’t know what her personal reasons are, and that’s really not the point. Whatever her reasons are, she’s bringing this lawsuit and it’s obviously legit because if it were not, those on her team would not allow it and would advise against it, and as I stated above, she knows it would make her look stupid to lose, so there’s that. Not saying she’s going to win, just saying it’s obviously legit and winnable if she’s attempting it.

I’m not here to argue on behalf of Letitia James or get into a pissing contest about how great Letitia James is, just stating what I know about prosecutors and District Atorneys.

elbanditoroso's avatar

This is chapter 1 of the Trump Fraud Lawsuit Chronicles. There is a very long distance between an indictment and a win in Court. This will go on for five years or more.

If the Trump family loses, then they’ll pay. But the lawsuit is not a slam dunk, and you can be sure that the Family will try and cheat, lie, and obfuscate their way out of it.

seawulf575's avatar

@SQUEEKY2 ”...the mean AG is making him accountable for tax fraud” No, she TRIED to get him for fraud and had no case. She’s hoping a civil trial will allow for public sentiment to weigh in. But in the end what she is REALLY doing is pandering for re-election. “See? I’m still out to get the evil Trump!”. And, of course, weak minded fools buy it because they, too, are deranged about Trump. That is what she is counting on.

So let me ask…it’s a derangement check…if her civil suit fails, will you admit that Trump did not commit fraud?

LadyMarissa's avatar

we have to “Get Trump!”.

FINALLY…we agree on something!!! :-)

WhyNow's avatar

Trump built an empire on the trump brand. A developer would build, their buildings’
worth would be well ‘paper trailed’ for bank and tax purposes. Trump would sell said
developer his trump brand and now valuate the branded property at 5 times the original.

How do you dispute the trump valuations? Almost impossible. Take a gucci bag (for
example) out of the assembly line before the brand name goes on and it will sell for
$100 bucks that’s all you can get for it. Let the bag finish assembly when the gucci
logo is added now the will sell for $500… hard to dispute the value.

Now… you say, the trump brand has fallen in value so much (debatable) people
feel cheated? This will be a tough sell to a judge for sure.

My guess is Leticia James is a lightweight compared to trump and will regret this
career ending move.

WhyNow's avatar

It seems to me that the media and attorneys generals have no problem with hunter
valuating his paintings at whatever he wants.

HP's avatar

@seawulf575 You have the most peculiar habit of ignoring what matters. This time, it is not Ms. James’ motives or political aspirations which count here. What matters is that she has put in the leg work to unravel and fully expose the extent of the pig’s criminal tentacles. As the Atlantic states, the Trump empire is in effect little more than one huge fraud with real estate and its other promotions mere sideline routes to perpretrate the swindle. Your conclusion that James is desperate is equivalent to watching the Titanic sink with its crew in the water, then telling us it is the circling sharks that are worried.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Nope. He’ll use his typical Trumpian methods to avoid it:
1) Call the charges a witch hunt over and over – and make sure Fox keeps repeating it.
2) Blame someone else for even bringing up the charges – and make sure Fox keeps repeating it.
3) Claim the whole thing is baseless and a political stunt
4) Delay! Delay! Delay!
5) AND continuously ask his supporters to send money to help him fight these baseless charges.

He’s well practiced. He got away with hundreds of millions by starting and bankrupting: Trump Steaks, Trump University, Trump Water, Trump Real Estate, Trump Airlines, Trump Casinos, Trump Magazine, Trump Vodka,... I’m sure I am missing a few. And he still managed to convince some people he is a businessman.

HP's avatar

@LuckyGuy a collective sigh goes up at the truth of your words. There’s no getting around it. Barnum is always right.

HP's avatar

But I believe this time the facade is coming to an end. Any prospects regarding future financing or “investment” have certainly evaporated. Of course the bottomless pit of magahead sucker money (the ultimate proof on the wisdom of Barnum) will be there regardless. But I wonder if Trump might have perpetuated the swindle forever had he not been President. The 4 years did shield him more or less from the relentless prosecutions and lawsuits he now undergoes. But on the other hand, it put the spotlight on the slug to fixate the entire world on his deformities. The untold thousands of his victims could wake up daily to the realization that the country itself this time was being played for the chump they themselves most assuredly were.

WhyNow's avatar

@jca2 Gave a very nice assessment of the matter tho I know the head nodders did not read.

But I feel you are holding back… are you starting to like trump?

HP's avatar

We agree on @jca2 ‘s assessment. As for holding back and my affection for the pig…... I get the joke.

SQUEEKY2's avatar

@seawulf575 And if the New York AG wins it’s civil case against Trump will you then admit he is corrupt and committed fraud?
Who am I kidding you will just spin it and blame the democrats.

HP's avatar

That is the galling thing concerning his defenders. The issue of the pig’s character is IGNORED. Instead, the actual effort to suppress ORGANIZED and HABITUAL crime is portrayed as both political bias and ruthless oppression by the “secret police”.

SQUEEKY2's avatar

You got to remember one thing when it comes to fright wingers @HP , Everything Republican is good and holy,. Everything Democrat is evil and bad.

WhyNow's avatar

Well I have gall (and style) and willing to admit trump committed fraud and is corrupt

right now!

I just need a little bit more than malevolent buffoon.

HP's avatar

Behold grasshopper! You conjure the questions and they materialize before us: Is the foul pig malevolent? And is buffoon the appropriate reverence due the clown president? These are the questions worthy of an evening’s contemplations. Pray yourself receptive and worthy of the forthcoming revelations.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Remember the AG had a lot of time with Trump’s CFO, she may have given him a “get out of jail free” card for turn states evidence.

She has the books too !

LadyMarissa's avatar

The FPOS went on Truth Social yesterday to scream how this is another witch hunt (the latest buzz words to enrage the masses) & the one thing that he did NOT do is deny that he had done that of which he is charged!!! He even went so far as to accuse Letitia James of being racist, but still NO denial!!

Pandora's avatar

@LadyMarissa I’m sure there is an audio or video of him actually saying he manipulated the numbers. He’s always so proud of the wrongs he does that he confesses to them but then tries to explain it away by saying everybody does it. But you are right. He never denies it.

Dutchess_III's avatar

The thing is HE isn’t smart enough to “manipulate” numbers. He’s got an army of accountants who knew what he wanted and they did it for him. And he OKd it all. Are they running like hell now?

Tropical_Willie's avatar

@Dutchess_III They have his CFO by the ankles, hanging upside down ! ! !

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Trump Faces ‘Criminal Liability’ in NY Case That Will ‘Wipe Him Out’: his ex-personal attorney Michael Cohen said Saturday.

https://www.newsweek.com/trump-faces-criminal-liability-ny-case-that-will-wipe-him-out-cohen-1746038

Cohen also said that James’ lawsuit against Trump could “wipe him out” financially if a court demands he pay restitution—adding that the former president could be ordered to pay much more than the $250 million “baseline” alleged by James in the lawsuit.

“What Tish James writes it that the baseline is $250 million. She’s not going below that. The amount is substantially greater,” he said. “And again, as I’ve said on several shows, I believe the number to be somewhere between $750 [million] and $1 billion.”

LadyMarissa's avatar

@Pandora I do think I saw a vid of him bragging, but I don’t remember off the top of my head where I saw it. He says sooo freakin much crap that it ALL begins to run together!!!

seawulf575's avatar

@HP “What matters is that she has put in the leg work to unravel and fully expose the extent of the pig’s criminal tentacles.” That you for making my point. She DIDN’T expose anything. She started off looking for actual criminal activity. Had she done that, your post would make sense. But since she tried and failed, your post fails with her. She is just trying to make ANYTHING up so that she can hopefully get a bump in the polls.

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Dutchess_III's avatar

The mods need a raise!

Tropical_Willie's avatar

“Grossly Inflated, Objectively False, and Therefore Fraudulent and Illegal”:

https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2022/09/letitia-james-trump-lawsuit/

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