Lawyers for the Trump Organization were due to present their final arguments for not charging the company on Monday.
The Trump Organization indicted in the coming days? Lawyers for Donald Trump’s company pleaded on Monday to try to avoid him with prosecutors, accused by the former Republican president of “harassing a political opponent”.
In recent days, reports have indicated that the closed-door investigations into the cases of the ex-New York real estate mogul – opened two years ago by the Manhattan district attorney and the New State district attorney York, two elected Democrats, and relating to suspicions of tax evasion or insurance fraud – were preparing to bear their first fruits.
According to several media, lawyers for the Trump Organization were to meet with prosecutors on Monday to present their final arguments in favor of not indicting the company. Information indirectly confirmed by Donald Trump himself on Monday evening, who indicated in a press release that his lawyers had been given “one day, today, to defend us from having done things that are commonplace in the world of business”.
Anonymous sources quoted by the “New York Times” had indicated last week that an indictment of the Trump Organization was under consideration, concerning benefits in kind granted to the financial director of the holding, Allen Weisselberg, faithful among the faithful. of Donald Trump, and presumably not declared to the tax authorities.
Asked by AFP, neither the prosecutors concerned nor the lawyers of the Trump Organization – an unlisted family holding company that owns golf clubs, hotels and luxury properties – or Allen Weisselberg have confirmed this information.
“Question of days”
For Bennett Gershman, Pace University law professor and ex-Manhattan prosecutor, a Trump Organization indictment should now be “a matter of days.”
Could the corporate body that is the Trump Organization be sued, without Donald Trump or any of his family members – he left the reins of his business to his two eldest sons and Allen Weisselberg when he left for the White House in early 2017 – be it too?
Many forensic experts deem this unlikely and expect Allen Weisselberg, who has so far refused to cooperate with justice, to be indicted as well, at the same time as the Trump Organization or soon after.
But no one risks a prognosis concerning a possible indictment of the former Republican president, who held his first major political rally in Ohio on Saturday since leaving the White House and maintains the ambiguity on a new candidacy for the presidential election in 2024.
One of the lawyers for the Trump Organization, Ron Fischetti, assured American media on Monday evening that Donald Trump would not be personally indicted, “at least not in what will fall this week” – while stressing that he was “not yet out of the woods.”
The former president, now domiciled in Florida, again qualified Monday these investigations as “continuation of the greatest witch hunt of all time”. He also accused Democratic prosecutors of being “ready to do anything to stop” his movement and him, “going so far as to commit professional errors and harass a political opponent”.
Even if he was indicted, that would not theoretically prevent him from running for president again, under US election laws.
The ongoing investigations are based in particular on eight years of tax returns from the former president obtained by prosecutors after a long legal battle, and on testimonies from his personal ex-lawyer Michael Cohen. Sentenced to three years in prison, the latter, who works with investigators, said the company regularly overvalued or undervalued its assets, possible crimes of tax fraud or insurance fraud.
The investigations should in any case continue beyond the first indictments, leaving the door open to new prosecutions in the long term. And the possibility of seeing justice catch up with Donald Trump does not fail to delight his opponents: “He never followed the rules” and “deserves to go to prison”, declared on CNN Barbara Res, a former president. of the Trump Organization.