Trumps had role in fraud scheme, Allen Weisselberg testifies at company’s trial

Former Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Alan Weiselberg Donald Trump and two of his children testified in court Thursday detailing their involvement in a scheme to defraud tax authorities.

Weiselberg said Donald Trump, or perhaps Eric Trump or Donald Trump Jr., signed checks for up to $100,000 to pay for private school tuition for Weiselberg’s grandchildren. Weiselberg said he then instructed the company’s controller to deduct the $100,000 from his salary, allowing him to report less income. Copies of some checks signed by the Trumps have been shown in court.

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“Don’t forget, I’m going to pay you back for this,” Weisenberg told Trump the first time he signed a support check. Back pay, he said, is a reduction in wages.

Two Trump Organization entities and Weiselberg are charged with more than a dozen counts of fraud and tax evasion. Wieselburg Entered a guilty plea In August, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office pleaded guilty to charges filed against him alleging he received more than $1.7 million in untaxed compensation.

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Weiselberg, who is still on the Trump Organization payroll, has evidence throughout the first two days recounted a litany of benefits He said he and several other executives received similarly reduced salaries to avoid paying taxes.

He told himself and several other executives that the pay cuts were offset by hefty bonus checks paid to executives as independent contractors for Trump Organization entities.

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“Donald Trump always wanted to sign bonus checks” before becoming president in 2017, Wieselberg said.

In the next two years, the practice stopped An internal review led to the changes At the company, he said.

“We’re going through a cleanup process across the company to make sure that everything is done properly, now that Mr. Trump is president,” Weiselberg said.

Court Hall S
Alan Weiselberg, the Trump Organization’s former chief financial officer, is testifying at the company’s trial on fraud charges in New York.

Jane Rosenberg

Keogh Retirement Plans, designed for self-employed people, used the funds provided as independent contractor payments to set up tax-deferred retirement accounts, Weisselberg said.

Defense attorneys for the Trump Organization have said the company did nothing wrong, laying the scheme squarely at Weiselberg’s feet, saying he hid salary deductions and independent contractor payments from Trump.

Trump Organization lawyer Alan Futerfass asked Weiselberg on Thursday, “Which human were you planning with?”

Weisselberg replied, “Jeff McConney,” referring to the company controller. Testified earlier During the trial. McConey was granted immunity in lieu of grand jury testimony in the case, and Wieselberg was blamed for the scheme.

Futerfass continued with questions that sought to distinguish Trump from the executives who worked under him.

“Did you conspire with anyone in the Trump family?” asked Futerfass.

“No,” Weissenberg replied.

“Did you make plans with Jeff McConney?” asked Futerfass.

“Yes,” Wieselberg replied.

“Did you plan with any member of the Trump family?” asked Futerfass.

“No,” Weissenberg replied.

Later, Futerfas asked, “Other than family members, you were among the most trusted people they knew. Is that correct?”

“Okay,” Weselberg replied.

Soon, Futerfass asked, “Do you feel ashamed of what you did?”

“More than you can imagine,” replied Wieselberg, gasping for breath.

Earlier Thursday, Weiselberg said under questioning in the complaint that the company’s other executives were active participants and beneficiaries of the equal pay and bonus arrangements.

Organization was described by Weiselberg His son Barry’s family To live in a newly renovated apartment in tony Central Park South, New York. He said the location was convenient for Barry Weiselberg’s job as manager of an ice rink and carousel run by the Trump Organization in Central Park. Alan Weiselberg said his son paid $500 out of pocket and $500 from his salary to rent the apartment, which he described as a “below market” rate.

At the time, Alan Weiselberg and his wife were living in a $8,200-a-month company-owned apartment under a lease signed by Donald Trump himself.

Allen Weisselberg said he gave his son’s tax documents to the outside accountant who was in charge of the Trump Organization’s entire annual tax account to prepare them. Alan Weiselberg said at the time that his son’s reported salary was “probably lower than it should be.”

Barry Weiselberg’s attorney, Peter Stambalk, declined to comment.


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