New York State Attorney General Letitia James on Wednesday filed a civil lawsuit against Donald Trump and his three children as part of an investigation into the tax practices of his group, the Trump Organization, that tightened legal ties around the former Republican president.
Leticia James, a Democrat who has been waging a legal battle against the billionaire for years, announced that she is seeking $250 million in damages on behalf of the state of New York and is banning Trump and his children Donald Jr., Ivanka and Eric from running. companies.
“We are suing Donald Trump for breaking the law … for personal gain, for his family and for his company,” she told reporters.
The lawsuit exacerbates the legal problems Trump has faced as the judiciary investigates his involvement in efforts to overturn the results of the presidential election that Joe Biden defeated him in 2020, as well as his role in the violent attack launched by his supporters on Congressional headquarters. On January 6, 2021, and most recently, he was in possession of presidential files that were confiscated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) during a raid on his Florida Mar-a-Lago headquarters.
In this latest case, a federal court on Wednesday ruled in favor of the Justice Department, allowing it to continue reviewing some of the confiscated documents, about 100 documents classified as “confidential.”
The decision came as a setback for the former president after the Justice Department granted his request to appoint an independent expert to review thousands of documents seized by the FBI, ending a dispute that had so far prevented federal investigators from scrutinizing the seizures.
Trump is not yet facing criminal prosecution in any of these cases, while he openly discusses the possibility of running in the 2024 election.
– Trump’s New York apartment – Leticia James said the complaint to the New York State Supreme Court “proves that Donald Trump inflated his net worth (of his estate) to billions of dollars to get rich illegally and cheated the system and also cheated us everyone.”
She explained that he “repeatedly and constantly manipulated” the value of his assets to “encourage banks to provide loans to the Trump organization on better terms” and “pay less taxes” and to “encourage insurance companies to provide him with insurance coverage at a higher level and with lower premiums.
“In short, he lied for a big financial gain,” she said.
On his social network Truth Social, the 45th President of the United States condemned the “new vicious campaign”, accusing Leticia James of political persecution.
“Latesha James is the most corrupt Attorney General in US history,” his son Eric Trump, executive vice president of the Trump Organization, tweeted, accusing her of “running a campaign based on a promise to prosecute my father… Look at the result “.
The Attorney General’s office listed the disputed assets, including golf courses, New York’s Trump Tower, and the Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida, in a 222-page lawsuit that also targets the former head of Trump’s organization. CFO Allan Weiselberg and his CFO Jeffrey McConnie.
In the criminal portion of the case, Allen Weisenberg pleaded guilty before the Manhattan District Attorney’s office to 15 counts of embezzlement and tax evasion of $1.76 million in undisclosed income between 2005 and 2021. The Trump organization is scheduled to be held liable for the same facts as the legal entity in a trial starting October 24.
Leticia James mentioned Trump’s three-story Trump Tower apartment on New York’s Fifth Avenue, explaining that the apartment’s price was advertised on a 2,700-square-foot floor, which is actually three times its actual floor area. 1,000 square meters, leading to an estimate of $327 million.
A business ban — and she added that her office is seeking to fine the former president $250 million, in addition to preventing him and his family from “permanently doing business in New York” and “involved in any transaction to purchase a commercial real estate in New York. York State or get a loan from any financial institution.”
He also referred the case to criminal justice and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which is tasked with collecting taxes.
The investigation was launched in March 2019 following the testimony of one of Trump’s former personal lawyers, Michael Cohen, before Congress in Washington.
After months of contention, Donald Trump testified under oath in August before the attorney general but exercised his right not to answer questions under the Fifth Amendment to the US Constitution, which allows no one to testify against him.