Prosecutor Joshua Steinglass blasted claims by attorneys for the Trump Organization firms that former chief monetary officer Allen Weisselberg acted alone and was the only beneficiary of the fraud.
Whereas Trump and his household aren’t charged within the case, Steinglass mentioned in his closing argument Thursday that the previous president was conscious of what Weisselberg and different executives had been doing.
“The Trump Group cultivated a tradition of fraud and deception, of lavishing perks to senior executives, of intentionally concealing their revenue from their accountants after which scapegoating these accountants,” he mentioned.
Trump Corp and Trump Payroll Corp are accused of partaking in a rip-off over greater than a decade to assist Weisselberg, different executives and the businesses themselves evade taxes by hiding perks equivalent to luxurious vehicles and flats.
Weisselberg, who pleaded responsible to tax fraud prices, served because the prosecution’s star witness, whereas Jeffrey McConney, the Trump Group’s controller, testified for the federal government underneath a grant of immunity. Weisselberg admitted evading taxes on about $1.7 million in fringe advantages.
Attorneys for Trump didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark.
One of many trial’s most dramatic moments got here after jurors left courtroom Thursday, when Steinglass complained to the choose that protection attorneys repeatedly claimed in closing arguments that Trump and his household had no data of the fraud.
The prosecutor promised when courtroom resumed Friday, he would delve additional into Trump’s alleged data of the scheme.
“It’s solely honest,” New York State Supreme Courtroom Justice Juan Merchan mentioned.
Earlier Thursday, attorneys defending the 2 companies argued that prosecutors did not show Weisselberg supposed to learn the businesses together with his fraud.
“We’re right here immediately due to one motive and one motive solely: the greed of Allen Weisselberg,” mentioned Susan Necheles, a lawyer for Trump Corp. She argued there was no proof Weisselberg dedicated the fraud to assist the businesses, however solely sought to complement himself.
Michael van der Veen, a lawyer for Trump Payroll Corp., mentioned there was no proof every other high-ranking government apart from Weisselberg engaged within the scheme.
“Weisselberg did it for Weisselberg,” van der Veen repeatedly informed jurors.
Each protection attorneys argued that prosecutors compelled Weisselberg to testify towards the corporate he helped construct.