Former US President Donald Trump will appear in court in New York on Monday as a civil fraud trial against him and two of his sons gets underway, with the case threatening the Republican’s business empire as he campaigns to retake the White House.
In Monday’s case, Judge Arthur Engoron has already ruled that Trump and his sons Eric and Don Jr. committed fraud by inflating the value of the Trump Organization’s real estate and financial assets for years.
New York Attorney General Letitia James is now seeking $250 million in fines and the removal of Trump and his sons from management of the family empire.
Trump said late Sunday that he planned to be present at the start of the trial Monday morning.
“I’m going to court tomorrow morning to fight for my name and reputation,” the 77-year-old wrote on his Truth Social platform. “This whole thing is a sham!!!”
In addition to this civil case, Trump also faces a number of major criminal proceedings in the coming months.
He will appear before a federal judge in Washington on March 4 on charges of attempting to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election won by Joe Biden.
Trump will then appear in New York court again, this time on criminal hush-money charges, and later in a federal court in Florida, where he is accused of mishandling classified documents after leaving office.
Finally, he will also face state charges in Georgia, where prosecutors say Trump illegally tried to change the southern state’s 2020 election results in his favor.
In the civil case in New York, Engoron ruled that Trump, his two eldest sons and other Trump Organization executives lied for years to tax collectors, lenders and insurers in a scheme that increased the value of their properties by $812 million between 2014 and 2014. exaggerated to $2.2 billion. 2021.
As a result, the judge revoked the business licenses that allowed the Trump Organization to operate some of its properties in New York.
Effectively imposing such penalties would be “a major blow to Donald Trump’s ability to do business in New York state in the future,” Will Thomas, a business law professor at the University of Michigan, told AFP.
Under that kind of pressure, Trump — who made his reputation and fortune as a real estate mogul in the 1980s and has promised to bring his cutthroat industry tactics to the Oval Office — could end up losing control of many of his company’s flagship assets. properties, such as his 5th Avenue Trump Tower in Manhattan.
According to Attorney General James, a Democrat, Trump’s own apartment in that building is among the spaces that were fraudulently overvalued — it was listed as three times larger than its actual size.
Another Manhattan building, at 40 Wall Street, was overvalued by between $200 and $300 million in financial disclosures, James claims.
Trump’s luxury Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida — the site of the classified documents drama — and several other Trump Organization golf clubs also appear in James’ complaint.
Trump has repeatedly dismissed the civil allegations in New York, calling James, who is black, “racist” and labeling Engoron “deranged.”
On his Truth Social platform, Trump claimed there was no “wrongdoing” in his actions to “pay back sophisticated Wall Street banks in full, with interest, with no defaults and no victims.”
Dozens of witnesses are likely to be called to testify at the trial, including Trump himself, and former Trump Organization chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg, who served time in prison after pleading guilty to tax fraud in a separate case that was filed against the company.
Trump’s children Eric, Don Jr. and his eldest daughter Ivanka – who was also initially the target of James’ complaint but ultimately not prosecuted – are also likely to provide their own testimony.
Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen – now an outspoken critic of the former president – and officials from certain Trump-affiliated financial institutions are also expected to appear.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by DailyExpertNews staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)