New York AG asks judge to make Trump pay $370M in fraud case

Former President Trump, his business and several top executives — including his adult sons — used “myriad deceptive schemes” to falsely inflate his net worth by billions, the New York attorney general’s office argued Friday in court filings ahead of closing remarks in his fraud trial next week.

“The conclusion that defendants intended to defraud when preparing and certifying Trump’s (statements of financial condition) is inescapable,” reads the state’s post-trial brief. 

Trump’s statements of financial condition — documents that detail the value of the Trump Organization’s various assets — are at the heart of the attorney general’s case. The financial statements were sent to banks and insurers to secure loans and deals, which the state purports is evidence of fraud. 

New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) asked the judge to force Trump to pay nearly $370 million as a penalty and to issue a lifetime ban on the former president and two top executives from doing real estate business in New York.

In their post-trial brief, Trump’s counsel repeated claims they made at trial — that banks wanted to work with the Trump Organization, did their due diligence and found no fraud. 

“Errors or misstatements happen all the time in accounting, if there are no indicia of fraud such as concealment, forgery, or deceit, then there is no basis to determine that these SFCs are fraudulent, and any misstatements are just accidental errors,” the defense brief states.

Trump reiterated those talking points in a Truth Social post later Friday, writing that there are “No Victims, No Crime, Great Financial Statements.”

“Letitia James is doing this to me,” he wrote.

Trump’s adult sons, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, who are also defendants in the case, urged the judge to dismiss the case against them. They claimed the attorney general failed to show they had “anything more than a peripheral knowledge or involvement in the creation, preparation or use” of their father’s financial statements.

“The record evidence and testimony adduced at trial conclusively establishes that the SFCs were prepared, in their entirety, by others at the company working in conjunction with the company’s long time outside accountants,” their lawyer, Clifford Robert, wrote in their joint post-trial brief. 

Both sons distanced themselves from the financial statements in testimony during the trial, pointing the finger at the accountants and other executives who they said handled the documents more closely. 

The attorney general’s office is seeking a five-year ban on the sons’ participation in the New York real estate industry. 

Judge Arthur Engoron already found Trump and his co-defendants liable for fraud; the trial is addressing other claims, including conspiracy, insurance fraud and falsifying business records. 

The briefs mark the final written arguments in the trial. The attorney general’s office and Trump’s legal team will make their closing arguments next week before the judge, who has said he hopes to issue a verdict by the end of this month.

Dan Butcher

Dan Butcher (aka HP Pundit) is not a Democrat or Republican. He is a free thinking independent bringing you news and commentary with a dose of much needed common sense.

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