Trump’s overinflated real estate empire, massive fraud end in civil suit from New York AG James

Trump’s overinflated real estate empire, massive fraud end in civil suit from New York AG James

New York Attorney General Letitia James has filed a $250 million civil lawsuit against Donald J. Trump, Ivanka Trump, Eric Trump, and Donald Trump Jr., as well as two Trump executives, Allan Weisselberg and Jeff McConney, for “numerous acts of fraud and misrepresentations,” and seeks to bar any of the Trumps from operating a company in the state of New York ever, or from engaging in any commercial real estate transactions in the state for five years.

“I’m announcing that today we’re filing a lawsuit against Donald Trump for violating the law as part of his efforts to generate profits for himself, his family, his company,” James said Wednesday morning. “The complaint demonstrates that Donald Trump falsely inflated his net worth by billions of dollars to unjustly enrich himself and to cheat the system, thereby cheating all of us.”

Actions have consequences. We’re seeking to: ➡️Make Trump pay $250 million. ➡️Ban the Trumps from running NY businesses for good. ➡️Ban Trump and Trump Org from buying commercial real estate in NY for 5 yrs. ➡️We’re making a criminal referral to the U.S. Dept of Justice.

— NY AG James (@NewYorkStateAG) September 21, 2022

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2022 · 6:34:44 PM +00:00 · Joan McCarter

The tweet thread beginning here from AG James lays out the case against Trump.

Our suit against Donald Trump and the Trump Org alleges a years-long financial fraud scheme. Here’s how Trump generated false and misleading values on his annual financial statements, which were then used to pay lower taxes, guarantee loans, and get better insurance rates:

— NY AG James (@NewYorkStateAG) September 21, 2022

The suit claims that Trump has regularly inflated the value of pretty much all of his assets—from Trump Tower to Mar-a-Lago to the former Trump hotel in Washington, D.C., in order to secure favorable loan and tax arrangements. For example, the suit alleges that Trump has valued Mar-a-Lago as high as $739 million, when it should have been valued at $75 million.

We found that Trump, his family, and the Trump Org used fraudulent and misleading asset valuations over 200 times in 10 years on his annual financial statements. These statements were then used to obtain hundreds of millions of dollars in loans and insurance coverage.

— NY AG James (@NewYorkStateAG) September 21, 2022

Trump used that higher valuation, James alleges, ”based on the false premise that it was unrestricted property and could be developed for residential use, even though Mr. Trump himself signed deeds donating his residential development rights and sharply restricting changes to the property.”

“Mr. Trump made known through Mr. Weisselberg that he wanted his net worth on the Statements to increase—a desire Mr. Weisselberg and others carried out year after year in their fraudulent preparation of the Statements,” the lawsuit said. “The scheme to inflate Mr. Trump’s net worth also remained consistent year after year.”

James is restricted from pursuing criminal charges in the matter, but is referring her findings “to the office of the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, noting that the conduct detailed in the complaint appears to violate federal law, specifically bank fraud and false statements to a bank.”

Sign if you agree: No one is above the law.

Trump and his followers proved on Jan. 6 how dangerously close they came to overturning our democracy. Help cancel Republican voter suppression with the power of your pen by clicking here and signing up to volunteer with Vote Forward, writing personalized letters to targeted voters urging them to exercise their right to vote this year.

Good judges are more important now than ever. In some states, judges are on the ballot this November. Tune in to this week’s The Downballot to listen to Justice Richard Bernstein talk about what being on the Michigan Supreme Court has been like, and how his re-election campaign is shaping up.

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