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NY Civil Lawsuit & Criminal Trial Against Donald Trump & Family

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  • Trump's New York criminal case, likely first for trial, faces crucial test


    Former U.S. President Trump indicted by Manhattan grand jury, in New York City

    NEW YORK (Reuters) - The first of four criminal cases against Donald Trump expected to go to trial faces a major test next week, when a New York judge is set to rule on the Republican former U.S. president's bid that the case be tossed because it is partisan and not covered by state law.

    Trump, the frontrunner for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, is scheduled to go on trial in state court in Manhattan starting March 25 on charges of falsifying business records to cover up a hush money payment to a porn star before the 2016 election.

    On Feb. 15, Justice Juan Merchan is set to rule on Trump's motion to dismiss the 34-count indictment. Trump has pleaded not guilty and argued the case should be tossed because it was brought for partisan purposes and because state laws do not apply to federal elections.

    Depending on Merchan's decision, the case could become the first criminal trial Trump faces before his expected Nov. 5 election rematch against President Joe Biden, a Democrat.

    A federal judge in Washington last week postponed Trump's trial on charges of seeking to overturn the 2020 election results. That trial was scheduled to start on March 4.

    Trump is seeking to have that case dismissed, arguing he is immune from prosecution over official acts taken while he was president. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on Tuesday rejected the argument, but Trump said through a spokesperson that he plans to appeal.

    Trial in the Florida federal criminal case accusing Trump of mishandling government documents is set for May but could be postponed. No trial date has been set for his Georgia state case over efforts to overturn his 2020 election loss to Biden.

    Trump has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

    PROSECUTORS ALLEGE A COVER-UP

    The Manhattan case centers on former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen's $130,000 payment to porn star Stormy Daniels to prevent her from publicly claiming she had a sexual encounter with Trump in 2006, while he was married. Trump denies the affair.

    Cohen in 2018 pleaded guilty to violating federal campaign finance laws.

    In charging Trump in April 2023, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said his New York-based family real estate company falsely recorded Trump's reimbursements to Cohen as a legal retainer.

    Prosecutors said that violated a state law against falsifying business records to conceal another crime. In this case, they said the payment violated federal campaign finance law and was part of a scheme to promote a candidacy by "unlawful means," violating state law.

    Some critics have said the case is less serious than the others Trump faces because it relates to his private life before taking office, rather than actions taken as president affecting elections or national security.

    In a radio interview last December, Bragg framed the case in terms of election integrity.

    "It's about conspiring to corrupt a presidential election and then lying in New York business records to cover it up - that's the heart of the case," Bragg said in an interview on WNYC's "The Brian Lehrer Show."

    TRUMP CLAIMS 'SELECTIVE PROSECUTION'

    In seeking dismissal, Trump's lawyers wrote that he had been targeted for "selective prosecution" by Bragg, a Democrat. Bragg's office said anyone else who behaved similarly would have been prosecuted, pointing to Cohen's guilty plea.

    Trump's lawyers also argued state prosecutors cannot use Trump's alleged concealment of federal election law violations to justify the false records charges, and that state election law did not apply to federal candidates.

    Bragg's office said the business records falsification law was not restricted to cases involving state-level crimes, and that state election law applies to federal campaigns.

    One judge has already ruled against Trump on similar grounds.

    In denying Trump's bid to move the case to federal court last year, U.S. District Judge Alvin Hellerstein said the New York election law did not distinguish between state and federal elections, and that the falsification of business records law did not exempt federal elections.

    Anna Cominsky, a New York Law School professor, said prosecutors appeared to have a stronger argument because the business records law was not limited to cover-ups of state crimes.

    "It's very broad," Cominsky said. "It's not saying the prosecutor has to prove that other crime was committed, but rather just that there was this intent."
    _________

    Never imagined this would be the first arrest and certainly not the first trial. Oh well, let's get Trump in front of a jury again, it's always a good idea
    “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

    Comment


    • Judge Sets Trump Trial for March 25

      “A judge on Thursday rejected Donald Trump’s bid to throw out the Manhattan district attorney’s criminal charges against him and said he plans to set a trial date for next month, clearing the way for the first prosecution of a former American president,” the New York Times reports.

      “The judge, Juan Merchan, announced the decision at a hearing in a Lower Manhattan courtroom as Mr. Trump looked on from the defense table. The former president’s lawyers objected to the judge’s decision for jury selection to begin on March 25, noting that the six-week trial would conflict with Mr. Trump’s presidential campaign.”

      Wall Street Journal: “Todd Blanche, a lawyer for Trump, said that his client’s constitutional rights were being violated because the former president isn’t being given enough time to prepare for trial. Blanche said there were 42 primaries and caucuses between March 1 and what he expected to be the end of the New York trial.”
      ________
      “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

      Comment


      • insertgleefulrubbingofhands.gif
        “Loyalty to country ALWAYS. Loyalty to government, when it deserves it.”
        Mark Twain

        Comment


        • Trump Ordered to Pay Over $350 Million and Barred From New York Business
          The judge’s ruling in Donald J. Trump’s civil fraud case could cost him all his available cash. It also bars the former president from running a business in the state for three years.


          The civil trial tested Donald J. Trump’s claims of wealth and a judge found them fraudulent. The former president is expected to appeal.

          A New York judge on Friday handed Donald J. Trump a crushing defeat in his civil fraud case, finding the former president liable for conspiring to manipulate his net worth and ordering him to pay a penalty of more than $350 million that could wipe out his entire stockpile of cash.

          The decision by Justice Arthur F. Engoron caps a chaotic, yearslong case in which New York’s attorney general put Mr. Trump’s fantastical claims of wealth on trial. With no jury, the power was in Justice Engoron’s hands alone, and he came down hard: The judge delivered a sweeping array of punishments that threatens the former president’s business empire as he simultaneously contends with four criminal prosecutions and seeks to regain the White House.

          Not only did Justice Engoron impose a three-year ban preventing Mr. Trump from serving in top roles at any New York company, including his own, but the judge also applied that punishment to the former president’s adult sons for two years. One of the sons, Eric Trump, is the Trump Organization’s de facto chief executive, and the ruling throws into doubt whether any member of the family can run the business in the near term.

          Mr. Trump will appeal the financial penalty — which could climb to $400 million or more once interest is added — but will have to either come up with the money or secure a bond within 30 days. The ruling will not render him bankrupt, because most of his wealth is tied up in real estate.

          Mr. Trump will also most likely ask an appeals court to halt the restrictions on him and his sons from running the company while it considers the case.

          But there might be little Mr. Trump can do to thwart one of the judge’s most consequential punishments: extending for three years the appointment of an independent monitor who will be the court’s eyes and ears at the Trump Organization, watching for fraud and second-guessing transactions that look suspicious.

          Mr. Trump’s lawyers have railed against the monitor, Barbara Jones, saying that her work has already cost the business more than $2.5 million; the decision to extend her oversight of the privately held family company could enrage the Trumps, who see her presence as an irritant and an insult.
          ___________

          $364 million to be precise. In cash.
          “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

          Comment


          • Some additional details...

            Trump’s Bank Fraud Trial Ends With $364 Million Gut Punch


            Donald Trump’s wealth was decimated on Friday when a New York judge ordered him and his lieutenants to pay more than $364 million for engaging in bank fraud, simultaneously yanking away the family’s control of his eponymous real estate company.

            Importantly, New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur F. Engoron also blocked Trump from borrowing money at any bank in New York for three years, erecting an enormous barrier to his ability to appeal the judgment, potentially forcing him to sell one of his prized buildings or golf courses.

            A towering 9 percent interest rate on the judgment could push the total well past $400 million, presenting Trump with the worst personal financial crisis in his 77 years, just as he fends off four criminal cases and seeks the American presidency in 2024.

            “This court is mindful that this action is not the first time the Trump Organization or its related entities has been found to have engaged in corporate malfeasance,” Engoron wrote. “This is not defendants’ first rodeo.”

            Trump and his corporate entities are on the hook for a little over $355 million. Two sons who currently serve as corporate executives, Don Jr. and Eric, each owe roughly $4 million. The company's former chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, owes an additional $1 million.

            New York Attorney General Letitia James emerged victorious, having spent nearly four years investigating the company, fighting for documents and testimony, and eventually spending three months at a civil trial that concluded last month. Her investigators found that Trump routinely inflated real estate assets and scored better bank loans, while Trump doubled down on his self-aggrandizing claims and noted that banks never complained anyway.

            The Trump Organization is essentially now Trump in name only.

            The tycoon’s sons, Donald Jr. and Eric Trump, were also ejected from their leadership positions and can no longer be the company’s executive vice presidents—or even lead any other corporations in New York for two years. They’re also on the hook for millions of dollars in fines.

            By mid-March, the company will have to answer to a former federal judge, Barbara Jones, who has spent a year serving as the corporation’s outside monitor. She has 30 days to reconfigure her current role. While the company previously had to alert her within two weeks anytime it moved more than $5 million, Jones will now have enhanced powers that put her first in line.

            Instead of seeking her forgiveness when they make a major financial decision, the Trumps will have to ask for permission.


            That means the Trumps won’t even have the authority to shift around money to fight this massive court order, forcing them to ask Jones for her approval before they can sell assets, borrow money, or strike outside business deals.

            Having viewed the Trump Organization as a paper-faking ruse, Justice Engoron is also forcing the company to pay for an independent director of compliance whose task is to clean it up from the inside.

            Friday’s conclusion marked a stunning defeat for the boastful business mogul. The 92-page order struck at the source of Trump’s pride, a company he led and grew for half a century—one that allowed him to transform his glittering entrepreneurial image in the 1980s city tabloids into a popular network TV show with The Apprentice, and eventually carried him into the White House in 2016.

            The AG’s triumph was all but certain. When both sides asked Engoron to issue definitive rulings before the trial started in October, the judge reviewed evidence collected by state investigators and concluded Trump had indeed engaged in bank fraud by vastly overstating the value of his properties to secure better loans, at one point even tripling the size of his three-floor palace in Trump Tower by making up space that didn’t exist.

            However, Engoron did not deliver everything the AG asked for. He awarded slightly less money than she had requested and declined to permanently ban Trump from the real estate industry. Engoron also reversed his pretrial decision to cancel the Trump Organization’s business licenses, doing away with what would have been the corporate death penalty and effectively ending a legal battle that’s currently on appeal in New York’s higher courts.

            While seeming to strike a ‘tough but fair’ judgment, Engoron still delivered a few surprises.

            Although this trial was civil in nature, Engoron still managed to punish a Trump confidant who has played a key role in protecting Trump from several criminal investigations in New York. Allen Weisselberg, an accountant who has served as Trump’s right-hand money man and company chief financial officer for decades, took the fall for his boss at the Trump Organization’s tax fraud trial in 2022 before another judge and spent 99 days at the city’s dreaded Rikers Island jail.

            But Trump’s mob-like tactics were on full display when Weisselberg revealed at that separate trial that the company was dangling an annual bonus over his head that would push his pay to $1 million—a compromising financial arrangement, given that he was on the witness stand and answering damning questions about his employer.

            Engoron, who recently expressed concern that Weisselberg lied in the bank fraud trial, noted in his Friday order that the Trump Organization has been keeping its former executive on a “short leash” meant to keep this key witness quiet. The judge ordered Weisselberg to pay $1 million he’s already received since leaving the company, a clear attempt to claw back what the judge saw as ill-gotten payments that served as nothing more than hush money.

            Weisselberg and the accountant he oversaw, Jeffrey McConney, are also forbidden from ever again working in corporate finance. (The two men appear to be retired now anyway.)

            Trump is expected to immediately appeal the decision, but doing so will be a logistical nightmare. New York requires that a person seeking to pause this kind of judgment immediately front a massive sum, anywhere from 110 percent to 120 percent of the judgment. And while Trump boasted in sworn testimony last year that he had some $400 million in cash, that wouldn’t be enough to cover this bank fraud judgment and last month’s $83 million verdict in his rape defamation case. Both cases require him to post the money up front, squeezing him at the same time.

            In New York, expensive appellate bonds can be covered by insurers. But those types of companies are licensed by the state, and Engoron’s decision also prohibits Trump from borrowing money from any entity licensed by New York’s Department of Financial Services. Industry experts told The Daily Beast that this two-pronged attack could force Trump to immediately sell one of the buildings that bear his name—in Chicago or New York—or desperately seek a foreign bank that has enough capital to loan him the money but has oddly avoided setting up shop in the financial capital of the world.


            “Obviously, the whole case centers around Trump making repeated and massive false statements,” said Tom Gober, a forensic accountant and certified fraud examiner.

            “Other than a friend, I can't imagine any lender being willing to stick his nose out that far knowing that he's going to get his nose cut off. It's not looking good for Trump. He’s going to have to come up with something,” Gober said.

            Trump can’t even rely on misappropriating MAGA donor funds that he keeps collecting in his bid for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination. The Save America political action committee already spent $24.8 million on lawyers and lawsuits in the second half of 2023, draining his coffers to protect him from this case and the ongoing criminal prosecutions in Georgia, Florida, New York, and Washington.

            Then there’s the matter of Trump’s potential escape. Engoron’s colossal judgment doesn’t just apply to Trump’s companies, but to him as an individual—as well as the revocable trust where he parked his riches at the start of his presidential administration in 2017. That means Trump can’t rely on his go-to method for avoiding his past financial failures: corporate bankruptcy.

            As a real estate developer, Trump was notorious for refusing to put skin in the game and creating legal distance between himself and his business deals, which is why he managed to survive the collapse of his casinos and resorts when they went bankrupt in 1991, 1992, 2004, and 2009. But Trump, who would wince at the mere thought of an embarrassing personal bankruptcy, won’t be able to take that route either, given that he would first be forced to sell off his brand name assets anyway.

            Although much of Trump’s anger in recent months has been directed at the state and federal prosecutors who have secured four criminal indictments against him, Trump has expressed particular outrage at the bank fraud case. His relentless attacks against Engoron and the court’s law clerk, the attorney Allison Greenfield, has resulted in nonstop death threats against them from his loyalist followers—including a bomb scare at the judge’s home on the final day of trial.

            The nature of this political intimidation was most readily apparent by the court’s decision to release this decision on Friday afternoon, ensuring that Engoron and Greenfield could leave the courthouse in time for any violent reprisal, according to a person briefed on the security arrangements.

            The former president has little time to address this personal financial crisis, however, as he must already begin to prepare for his battle against the Manhattan District Attorney at another New York courthouse just a block away.

            On Thursday, Justice Juan Merchan batted away Trump’s attempts to delay his upcoming criminal trial for faking business records to effect a coverup of his sexual affair with the porn star Stormy Daniels that spared his scandal-ridden 2016 presidential campaign from additional embarrassment. Trump will be back in court four days a week starting Monday, March 25.
            _________
            “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

            Comment


            • Judge: Trump team 'changed their tune' on independent monitor

              A major part of today's ruling is the three-year extension of Judge Barbara Jones' role as independent monitor over Trump-owned businesses.

              Jones has been bashed by the Trump legal team, but in a footnote on page 86 of his ruling, Justice Engoron points out that they had helped put her name forward.

              "The court did not appoint Judge Jones randomly or arbitrarily or by happenstance," Engoron writes.

              "Rather, she was the only one of the three candidates that both sides proposed for the position of independent monitor."

              But after she issued a report last month criticising the Trumps' financial practices, the "defendants changed their tune", says the judge.

              Overnight, she went from "a universally-respected former judge with a stellar resume, nominated by defendants themselves" to someone who was "being unfair to defendants and out to get them".
              from the BBC live page

              Comment


              • Originally posted by statquo View Post

                from the BBC live page

                Overnight, she went from "a universally-respected former judge with a stellar resume, nominated by defendants themselves" to someone who was "being unfair to defendants and out to get them".
                Typical. So typical. The moment you say something against Trump, you're the wicked enemy.
                “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

                Comment


                • From the judge's decision:

                  “Their complete lack of contrition and remorse borders on pathological. They are accused only of inflating asset values to make more money. The documents prove this over and over again.”
                  “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

                  Comment


                  • Pay your bills like you told NATO members

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by statquo View Post
                      Pay your bills like you told NATO members
                      "The rules are for everyone else but me" ~ The Narcissist's Credo
                      “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

                      Comment


                      • Explainer-How will Trump pay his $355 million civil fraud judgment?


                        Former U.S. President Trump attends a hearing on a criminal case linked to a hush money payment, in New York City


                        NEW YORK (Reuters) - Donald Trump's $355 million civil fraud judgment could squeeze the former U.S. president's cash reserves in the coming months and sharply limit his ability to obtain credit.

                        Here is an explanation for how the Friday order by a New York state judge could affect Trump's finances as he seeks the Republican nomination to challenge Democratic President Joe Biden in the Nov. 5 U.S. election.

                        WHAT WAS THE RULING?

                        Justice Arthur Engoron found that Trump fraudulently inflated his net worth to obtain better loan terms. In addition to imposing monetary penalties, he barred Trump from running a corporation in New York for three years, and also ordered that no bank chartered or registered in the state lend to Trump and several of his businesses and entities for three years.

                        Trump has denied wrongdoing and called the case a political vendetta by New York Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat.

                        HOW WILL THE DECISION IMPACT TRUMP'S REAL ESTATE EMPIRE?

                        Trump's holdings consist of a global network of roughly 500 entities spanning real estate, licensing and other business ventures.

                        The former president's finances are opaque, but Forbes estimates his net worth at $2.6 billion, most of it tied up in real estate.

                        Trump testified in an April deposition that he had roughly $400 million in cash.

                        Though he could sell parts of his portfolio to satisfy the judgment, it is unclear how much his property holdings are worth, given the headwinds in the commercial real estate sector.

                        IS TRUMP FINANCIALLY ABLE TO PAY THE FULL JUDGMENT?

                        The ban on applying for loans from banks registered or chartered in New York could severely restrict Trump's ability to raise cash.

                        In addition to the $354.9 million judgment in the civil fraud case, Trump must pay $83 million in damages to writer E. Jean Carroll after a jury found he defamed her when he denied raping her in the 1990s.

                        Another Manhattan jury in May 2023 ordered Trump to pay Carroll $5 million in damages after a trial in a separate defamation and sexual assault case that she brought.

                        Trump has denied raping Carroll. He is appealing the first verdict and has said he will appeal the second.

                        Trump's portfolio could see a major windfall if he were to sell his stake in his social media platform Truth Social, the value of which has soared as his bid to return to the White House gathers steam.

                        Trump's stake in the company, Trump Media & Technology Group, is now worth about $4 billion, based on trading in the shares of a black-check acquisition vehicle that has agreed to merge with it. If the deal closes, Trump would be able to sell his shares in the combined company six months later.

                        U.S. financial regulators gave the deal a green light this week, raising the prospect it could close in the first half of 2024.

                        CAN TRUMP USE CAMPAIGN FUNDS TO PAY THE JUDGMENT?

                        No, because unlike many of Trump's legal troubles, the case brought by James was not related to his campaign or his conduct as a president or political candidate.

                        Some legal experts have said damages awards are strictly personal expenses, regardless of assertions by Trump and his lawyers that the case brought against him was politically motivated.

                        WHEN WILL TRUMP HAVE TO PAY?

                        Trump's lawyers have vowed to appeal the decision.

                        He could be required to deposit the full amount of the judgment against him plus interest during any appeal, which is standard practice in similar cases.

                        Trump could also post a smaller amount with collateral and interest by securing a type of loan called an appeal bond. But he could have trouble finding a lender after Engoron ruled that he lied to banks about his wealth.

                        The appeal could take more than a year, and it is not yet clear whether an appellate court would put Engoron's Friday decision on hold during the process.

                        WHAT HAPPENS IF TRUMP FAILS TO PAY?

                        If he exhausts his appeals and refuses to pay in the civil fraud case, Trump could be held in contempt of court and hit with additional fines. The state could also seek to garnish Trump's wages. Imprisonment would be possible but extremely unlikely.
                        _________
                        “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

                        Comment


                        • Trump seeks to block Stormy Daniels, Michael Cohen from testifying at NY hush money trial

                          Former President Trump’s lawyers in his hush-money case on Monday demanded a New York judge block key witnesses from testifying in Trump’s first criminal trial set to begin next month.

                          Trump attorney Todd Blanche moved to block testimony from Michael Cohen, Trump’s ex-fixer, and two women he paid to stay quiet about affairs they alleged with Trump: Porn actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal.

                          Trump’s reimbursements to Cohen are the thrust of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s (D) prosecution of Trump, who denies the affairs and pleaded not guilty to his 34 charges of falsifying business records.

                          The 47-page motion attacks the witnesses’ credibility at length, casting Cohen as a “liar” and suggesting Daniels would offer “false” and “salacious” testimony.

                          Trump’s lawyers also took aim at how prosecutors have described the hush money payments as a “catch-and-kill” scheme to quash negative information about Trump in advance of the 2016 presidential election.

                          The Hill has reached out to Bragg’s office for comment.

                          Trump’s lawyers also asked to block the notorious 2005 Access Hollywood tape, in which Trump is caught on a hot mic disparaging women, and evidence from close confidants at the time of his alleged crime, including Rudy Giuliani and ex-Trump Organization chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg.

                          Monday’s filing came soon after prosecutors filed their motion to block Trump from introducing certain testimony at trial, including claims he is being selectively prosecuted and Justice Department filings that would cast doubt on Cohen’s credibility.

                          Blanche said the state hoped to use “improper” and “inadmissible” evidence to bolster their “listless ‘zombie’ case” meant to interfere with Trump’s 2024 presidential campaign.

                          The defense attorney pointed to testimony from Cohen in Trump’s civil fraud trial, which ended last month, as a reason to exclude him from the upcoming trial. Cohen testified in the fraud trial that he and Weisselberg “reverse-engineered” Trump’s assets to reach a number the former president liked, but on cross-examination, backtracked on his remarks.

                          “Michael Cohen is a liar,” Trump’s lawyers wrote.

                          “He recently committed perjury, on the stand and under oath, at a civil trial involving President Trump. If his public statements are any indication, he plans to do so again at this criminal trial. The Court should preclude Cohen’s testimony in order to protect the integrity of this Court and the process of justice.”

                          Trump’s hush money trial is scheduled to begin in New York on March 25, the first criminal trial he’ll face — and that any former president has ever faced.
                          _________

                          I assume they're going to keep Trump off the witness stand for the exact same reason.
                          “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

                          Comment


                          • Trump cannot line up full bond in New York fraud case, offers to post $100 million


                            Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) annual meeting in National Harbor

                            NEW YORK (Reuters) - Donald Trump is unable to post a full bond while he appeals a $454.2 million judgment that a judge imposed in New York state's civil fraud case against him, and wants instead to secure a $100 million bond, his lawyers said on Wednesday.

                            Trump is appealing a Feb. 16 decision by Justice Arthur Engoron of the state court in Manhattan, which includes a three-year ban from serving in a top role at any New York company, or seeking loans from banks registered in the state.

                            Engoron ruled in a case brought by state Attorney General Letitia James, who accused the former president and his family company of overstating the value of his properties to inflate his net worth and obtain better loan and insurance terms.

                            The judge imposed a $354.9 million penalty against Trump, which had by last week grown to $454.2 million with interest. Another $112,000 of interest gets added each day.

                            In a filing with the Appellate Division, a mid-level appeals court, Trump's lawyers said the "exorbitant and punitive amount of the judgment coupled with an unlawful and unconstitutional blanket prohibition on lending transactions would make it impossible to secure and post a complete bond."

                            They said a $100 million bond, together with Trump's "vast" real estate holdings and ongoing oversight by a court-designated monitor for the Trump Organization, would be more than sufficient to secure the judgment.

                            Trump's lawyers also sought to temporarily stay enforcement of the judgment during his appeal, saying he would suffer "irreparable harm" if James forced the sale of his real estate assets to raise capital.

                            James' office did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

                            A bonding company would be on the hook for any payout if Trump lost his appeal and proved unable to pay.

                            It might also have difficulty collecting if Trump, the frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination, reclaimed the White House from Democrat Joe Biden.

                            Trump is also seeking to avoid posting a full bond during an expected appeal of last month's $83.3 million defamation verdict in favor of the writer E. Jean Carroll.

                            He has asked the judge in that case to let him appeal without posting any security, or alternatively by posting at most a $24.5 million unsecured bond.

                            _________

                            Suddenly the "billionaire" with over "$400 million" in cash, which he claimed under oath, is crying poor mouth. [Insert Louis Renault quote here]

                            Donald Trump is truly a very stable genius, just as he's claimed. Only Donald Trump can turn a $5 million defamation judgement into an $88.3 million defamation judgement, a $15 million fine into a $355 million fine....and best of all, the stable genius did it all in less then 12 months.
                            “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

                            Comment


                            • Wah Waaaahhhh!
                              “Loyalty to country ALWAYS. Loyalty to government, when it deserves it.”
                              Mark Twain

                              Comment


                              • Former Trump CFO Allen Weisselberg pleads guilty to perjury in ex-president’s civil fraud case


                                Allen Weisselberg, right, is escorted to Manhattan criminal court, Monday, March 4, 2024, in New York. Weisselberg, the former chief financial officer of the Trump Organization, surrendered to the Manhattan district attorney Monday morning for arraignment on new criminal charges, the prosecutor's office said.

                                NEW YORK (AP) — Allen Weisselberg, the former chief financial officer of Donald Trump's company, pleaded guilty Monday in New York to perjury in connection with testimony he gave in the ex-president’s civil fraud case.

                                Weisselberg, 76, pleaded guilty to two counts of perjury and will be sentenced to five months in jail — which would be his second stint behind bars after 100 days last year in an unrelated tax fraud case.

                                The pleas related to testimony he gave at a July 2020 deposition in New York Attorney General Letitia James’ case against Trump, but in court Monday he also admitted, without pleading guilty, to lying on the witness stand at the former president’s civil fraud trial last fall.

                                Prosecutors accused Weisselberg of lying under oath in the case about allegations that Trump lied about his wealth on financial statements given to banks and insurance companies.

                                “Allen Weisselberg looks forward to putting this situation behind him,” his lawyer Seth Rosenberg said in a statement.

                                After The New York Times reported last month that Weisselberg was in negotiations to plead guilty to perjury, Judge Arthur Engoron, who presided over the fraud trial, ordered attorneys to provide details related to the Times’ report.

                                Trump is appealing Engoron’s judgment ordering him to pay more than $454 million in fines and interest for submitting fraudulent information about his asset values on years of financial records.

                                Weisselberg's new criminal case comes just weeks before Trump is scheduled to stand trial on separate allegations that he falsified business records. That case involves allegations that Trump falsified company records to cover up hush money payments made during the 2016 campaign to bury allegations that he had extramarital sexual encounters. Trump has pleaded not guilty and denies wrongdoing.

                                Former Trump lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen has said Weisselberg had a role in orchestrating the payments, but he has not been charged in that case, and neither prosecutors nor Trump’s lawyers have indicated they will call him as a witness. That trial is scheduled to begin March 25.

                                Weisselberg’s case is separate from the criminal case that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg brought against Trump last year.

                                Weisselberg previously served 100 days in jail last year after pleading guilty to dodging taxes on $1.7 million in off-the-books compensation from the Trump Organization. He is still on probation. Prior to that he had no criminal record.

                                He left New York City’s notorious Rikers Island in April, days after Trump was indicted in his New York hush money criminal case.

                                Under that plea deal, Weisselberg was required to testify as a prosecution witness when the Trump Organization was put on trial for helping executives evade taxes. He did so carefully, laying out the facts of his own involvement in evading taxes but taking care not to implicate Trump, telling jurors that his boss was unaware of the scheme.
                                ___

                                “He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason why they fell for him.”

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