New York judge finds Donald Trump liable for fraud

World Wednesday 27/September/2023 15:55 PM
New York judge finds Donald Trump liable for fraud

New York: US former President Donald Trump and his son have been found liable by a New York Judge for providing false financial statements for roughly a decade, CNN reported on Wednesday.

As per CNN, Judge Arthur Engoron cancelled the Trump Organisation’s business certification and Attorney General Letitia James’ motion for summary judgment, finding Trump, his sons, and others “to be liable as a matter of law for persistent violations” of New York state law.
The judge found that the former US President repeatedly engaged in providing false financial statements to lenders and insurers for about a decade.

“Today, a judge ruled in our favour and found that Donald Trump and the Trump Organization engaged in years of financial fraud,” James said in a statement Tuesday night. “We look forward to presenting the rest of our case at trial.”

The Attorney General also sought $250 million in damages, a ban on the Trumps from serving as officers of a business in New York, and to stop the company from engaging in business transactions for five years.

The ruling would affect the business certifications of the Trump entities including the Trump Organisation, and said a receiver will be put in place to “manage the dissolution” of the corporate entities.

Meanwhile, the Georgia election subversion case is one of four criminal cases proceeding against the former president, who is also involved in several civil matters that are also clogging up his legal calendar as the 2024 election cycle heats up, according to CNN.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee's order cements that the Fulton County prosecution against Trump won’t go to trial this year, and it presents the possibility that it could be competing against the trials set for the first half of next year in the three other criminal cases against Trump.

One of those cases is the federal election subversion case that special counsel Jack Smith has brought against Trump in Washington, DC.

Notably, Jack Smith took a more streamlined approach than Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis against Trump, and charged him by himself, without any co-defendants, CNN reported.

On the other hand, the trial date for the prosecution by Manhattan prosecutors of Trump for an alleged hush-money scheme in his 2016 campaign appears to be in flux.

Initially scheduled for March 2024 as well, the judge in that case signalled this week he was open to moving the start date to accommodate Trump’s increasingly complicated legal calendar.

The special counsel case alleging Trump mishandled classified documents is slated for a trial that begins in a Florida federal court in late May.

“While he is juggling these various criminal cases – as well as the New York attorney general’s civil fraud case against his business and family going to trial in October, as well as the defamation proceedings related to his smears of a woman who accused him of sexual assault – Trump is ramping up for the 2024 presidential race, where he is the front-runner for the GOP nomination,” CNN reported.

Trump has argued that prosecutors’ attempt to bring him to trial in the coming months is a “politically-motivated effort” to meddle in the 2024 election.

In arguing that the 19 defendants in her case should be tried together on a quick timeline, Willis had argued that breaking up the case “to multiple lengthy trials would create an enormous strain on the judicial resources of the Fulton County Superior Court.”

McAfee’s new order did not indicate whether he is considering further breaking out the 17 defendants not being tried in October into smaller groups, but it is a proposal that some of the defendants are already floating.

“Three or more simultaneous, high-profile trials would create a host of security issues and would create unavoidable burdens on witnesses and victims, who would be forced to testify three or more times on the same set of facts in the same case,” CNN cited the prosecutors in Willis’ office from a filing.