Trump Organization Criminal Trial Begins In New York

by | Oct 31, 2022 | Politics

The criminal trial for the Trump Organization began Monday in New York, as the former president’s family business faces accusations that it defrauded the city, state and federal tax authorities for 15 years by providing off-the-books financial perks to its executives.Opening arguments started in the high-profile case, with acting New York Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan presiding over the trial. Prosecutors with the Manhattan district attorney’s office told jurors that two of Donald Trump’s companies — the Trump Corp. and Trump Payroll Corp. — participated in a scheme to illegally compensate executives with lavish perks as a way to help them evade payroll taxes.Advertisement“This case is about greed and cheating — cheating on taxes,” said Susan Hoffinger, the head of the district attorney’s investigations division.Although it is his company that’s currently on trial, Trump himself is not charged with any wrongdoing — though prosecutors have not yet decided whether he could face criminal charges in the future. Trump was not present in the courtroom, nor were his three oldest children who have all held key positions at the company.Prosecutor Susan Hoffinger leaves the courtroom for a lunch recess during a trial at the New York Supreme Court Monday in New York City.Michael M. Santiago via Getty ImagesManhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg began investigating Trump and his company’s financial practices over three years ago, after going to the U.S. Supreme Court twice to gain access to his tax records. The Trump Organization is the holding company for the former president’s real estate buildings, golf courses and other assets. AdvertisementLast year, the company and its former chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, were indicted in what prosecutors called a “sweeping and audacious” tax fraud scheme, in which Weisselberg was said to have collected over $1.7 million in untaxed income through off-the-books perks.Weisselberg, 75, pleaded guilty to 15 felony charges in August …

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