Trump Tower, golf courses ‘at stake’ in New York as Trump pleads fifth: expert

A former New York State Assistant Attorney General has warned that former President Donald Trump’s most prized assets, including Trump Tower in Manhattan and his golf courses, are ‘at stake’ in the civil investigation led by Attorney General Letitia James.

Trump sat for an hour-long deposition on Wednesday, apparently invoking his Fifth Amendment right not to answer questions more than 400 times. The investigation focuses on the valuation of Trump’s assets and whether the former president’s company, the Trump Organization, misrepresented reported valuations of some of his real estate assets for financial purposes, including better conditions on loans and insurance, as well as tax advantages.

Tristan Snell, the managing partner of and former assistant attorney general for the state of New York, said the investigation was a “big deal” and felt that Trump pleading the Fifth made James’ case ” even stronger”. Notably, Snell helped lead the successful civil lawsuit against the now-defunct Trump University, which ultimately resulted in a $25 million settlement.

“It goes straight to the crown jewel of his real estate portfolio,” Snell said. Business Intern.

Former President Donald Trump on Wednesday declined to answer questions under oath in New York regarding alleged fraud at his family business. Above, Trump walks towards a vehicle outside Trump Tower in New York on August 10, 2022.
STRINGER/AFP via Getty Images

James, a Democrat, has suggested she could seek the breakup of Trump’s businesses through New York’s so-called corporate death penalty. The Trump Foundation had previously been disbanded after facing lawsuits in 2019.

“That’s it, because it’s Trump Tower [in Manhattan]at issue is 40 Wall Street, which is one of his most prized properties and probably one of his most valuable,” Snell said. Initiated. “All of his golf courses are also in play, so that’s a big deal.”

On Twitter, Snell said Trump pleading the fifth didn’t help his case.

“This is a civil matter, so the court can draw an inference of liability,” he wrote. “That’s exactly what the AG hoped to achieve. The case is now even stronger.”

“After Trump takes the Fifth today, I’d bet the NY AG will officially begin its trial against the Trumps for tax and financial evasion in the next 3-6 months, possibly much sooner – and probably before the holidays. “, added Snell. another post.

Trump has strongly denied any wrongdoing. He argues that the New York investigation is part of a larger “witch hunt” against him and his allies. He argues that the investigation is politically motivated.

“I once asked, ‘If you’re innocent, why are you accepting the Fifth Amendment?’ Now I know the answer to that question,” Trump said in a statement Wednesday.

“When your family, your business and everyone in your orbit have become the targets of an unfounded and politically motivated witch hunt supported by lawyers, prosecutors and the bogus news media, you have no choice. .”

Newsweek contacted Trump’s press office for further comment.

A spokesperson for James’ office confirmed that Trump had passed the Fifth Amendment.

“While we do not comment on specific details, we can confirm that today our office conducted a deposition of former President Donald Trump,” the spokesperson said, CNBC reported.

“Attorney General Letitia James participated in the deposition in which Mr. Trump invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. Attorney General James will pursue the facts and the law wherever they may lead. Our investigation continues.”

Michael C. Ford