April 1, 2023

  • The office of New York Attorney General Letitia James indicted Trump, his children and his business.
  • “Trump inflated his net worth by billions to further enrich himself and deceive the system,” James’ office said.
  • James is seeking to permanently ban the Trump family from doing business in New York and pursue a $250 million fine.

New York’s attorney general on Wednesday filed a sweeping civil lawsuit against former President Donald Trump, his businesses and his three eldest sons.

James is seeking to permanently ban the Trump family from doing business in New York and pursue a $250 million fine. The state attorney general’s office is also seeking to appoint an independent monitor to “oversee the Trump Organization’s compliance, financial reporting, valuation and disclosures to lenders, insurers and tax authorities” for at least five years.

“Trump has inflated his net worth by billions of dollars to further enrich himself and deceive the system,” said the office of Letitia James, a New York stock company.

“Mr. Trump and the Trump Organization have repeatedly and consistently manipulated the value of assets to induce banks to lend to the Trump Organization,” James said in a news conference Wednesday announcing the civil lawsuit.

She continued: “The fraudulent activity allowed the Trump Organization to obtain better loan terms than otherwise, pay lower taxes, and induce insurers to offer higher limits at lower premiums.”

James said Wednesday that her office believes the conduct outlined in the civil lawsuit “also violates federal criminal law, including making false statements to financial institutions and bank fraud.” State investigators will refer the matter to the Southern District of New York, she said. U.S. Attorney’s Office and IRS.

The lawsuit is the result of a three-year aggressive investigation by James, part of his 2018 campaign that resulted in a promise to investigate and prosecute Trump and his New York-incorporated real estate and golf resort empire.

In April, state Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron held Trump in contempt of court and eventually fined Trump $110,000 a day after finding he failed to comply with a subpoena to obtain his personal business documents.

N’Gollen also sided with James, demanding that Trump and his two eldest children comply with her subpoenas to testify. Trump defended the fifth president some 400 times when he was ousted by James and her lawyers last month.

James on Wednesday accused the Trump Organization of releasing financial statements that “clearly violate” generally accepted accounting principles.

“Despite saying that these statements were prepared according to these principles, some of the common tactics they used include saying that Mr. Trump has cash on hand that he does not have,” she said.

Many of the fraud allegations in the lawsuit focus on Trump’s 10-year financial statement. These are an annual list of the value of Trump’s personal skyscrapers, hotels, golf resorts, brand deals, and more; Trump has used these allegedly inflated valuations to impress banks and other interest groups.

The veracity of the statements — either signed by Trump or Eric Trump after 2017 — has since the former president’s fixer-turned-critic Michael Cohen put the 2011-2013 period into question. The veracity of the statements has been publicly questioned since he was handed over as part of his testimony before Congress in 2019.

James claimed that Cohen’s testimony about the statements was the impetus for her investigation. Even Mazars U.S., Trump’s now former accounting firm, which has prepared statements for decades, said in February that the documents “should not be relied upon.”

Mathers dropped the statements after James’ office found them repeatedly “misrepresenting objective facts.”

Those facts include the size of his Trump Tower penthouse, which Trump allegedly claims is three times the actual square footage.

Trump also allegedly inflated his liquidity — the amount of cash on hand — and artificially inflated some of his valuations by a fixed percentage of the value of an undisclosed “brand,” despite making clear in the statement that no Consider the brand value.

For his part, Trump has insisted he committed no financial wrongdoing and has repeatedly accused the attorney general’s office of a politically motivated “witch hunt.”

The story is developing. Check for updates.

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