Trump could LOSE control of Trump Tower and other New York properties
Trump Towerless? Former president could LOSE his iconic skyscraper, Wall Street high-rise, Westchester golf club and NY estate after judge ruled he committed years-long fraud
- Trump faces the prospect of losing some of his flagship properties in New York
- They will be placed in receivership if the October 2 trial goes against him
- It means he will not be able to sell the assets or use them to secure loans
Donald Trump could lose control of Trump Tower, his Westchester golf club and other New York properties after a judge ruled that he lied about his wealth for years and committed fraud by submitting false valuations to secure loans.
New York Judge Arthur Engoron ruled that Trump committed fraud for years while building the real estate empire that catapulted him to fame and the White House, after prosecutors charged he inflated property valuations with lenders and diminished them with tax authorities.
The decision could end the former president’s control over his flagship Trump Building at 40 Wall Street in Lower Manhattan and his iconic residence Trump Tower.
Trump could also lose his family estate and his golf club in Westchester County.
Donald Trump could lose control of his New York properties – including his Trump Tower
The decision means Trump would still own the properties, but they would be placed in receivership.
He would no longer be able to sell off any assets or use them to secure loans. If they are sold by the court, Trump would not see any returns until debts and liabilities have been paid.
Experts have called this decision a ‘corporate death penalty’.
The former president railed against the decision, taking to Truth Social to say it was ‘a very sad day for the New York State System of Justice’.
‘Today’s Ruling about a Company that has done a magnificent job for New York State fails to acknowledge the fact that Murder and all other forms of Violent Crime have reached record levels in New York State,’ he wrote.
‘Can you imagine ruling against me for having done business perfectly, and yet letting people go on a rampage on the sidewalks of New York?
‘This is the Judicial conduct that is forcing thousands of companies to flee New York for other environs, while virtually nobody comes back to the City or State.’
Judge Engoron’s ruling was a victory for New York Attorney General Letitia James in her lawsuit against Trump. His decision effectively decided that no trial was needed to determine that the former president had fraudulently secured favorable terms on loans and insurance deals.
James has argued that Trump inflated the value of his properties by as much as $2.2 billion and is seeking a penalty of about $250 million.
The judge’s order will not dissolve Trump’s company but will impact its operations. Trump can appeal.
The trial will determine the size of the penalty Trump will face.
But the order did cancel the business certificates that allow some of Trump’s New York properties to operate, which is what could affect his control of those prominent Trump-brand properities.
Trump could also lose control of his signature business establishment: 40 Wall Street
Also in danger is Trump’s Westchester, N.Y., golf club
‘Today’s Ruling about a Company that has done a magnificent job for New York State fails to acknowledge the fact that Murder and all other forms of Violent Crime have reached record levels in New York State,’ Donald Trump said of the ruling
The civil trial begins October and could run through the end of the year, as Trump continues to lead the GOP field for the Republican presidential nomination.
It comes as Trump faces multiple criminal indictments in multiple jurisdictions related to his election overturn effort and other matters.
James sued last year, claiming numerous acts of fraud. Lawyers representing Trump and his company, as well as his adult children, asked the judge to dismiss the suit through summary judgement.
James found that the former president and his company deceived banks, insurers and others by massively overvaluing his assets and exaggerating his net worth on paperwork used in making deals and securing financing.
She said he boosted valuations by up to $2 billion, inflating the value of signature assets including the Mar-a-Lago club where he now resides and his Manhattan penthouse apartment at Trump Tower.
The decision, days before the start of a non-jury trial in Attorney General Letitia James´ lawsuit, is the strongest repudiation yet of Trump´s carefully coiffed image as a wealthy and shrewd real estate mogul turned political powerhouse.
Beyond mere bragging about his riches, Trump, his company and key executives repeatedly lied about them on his annual financial statements, reaping rewards such as favorable loan terms and lower insurance premiums, Engoron found.
Those tactics crossed a line and violated the law, the judge said, rejecting Trump’s contention that a disclaimer on the financial statements absolved him of any wrongdoing.
Manhattan prosecutors had looked into bringing a criminal case over the same conduct but declined to do so, leaving James to sue Trump and seek penalties that could disrupt his and his family´s ability to do business in the state.
Engoron’s ruling, in a phase of the case known as summary judgment, resolves the key claim in James’ lawsuit, but six others remain.
Trump has repeatedly attacked New York State AG Letitia James and accused her of bias against him
Trump’s lawyers had asked the judge to throw out the case, which he denied.
They contend that James wasn’t legally allowed to file the lawsuit because there isn’t any evidence that the public was harmed by Trump’s actions. They also argued that many of the allegations in the lawsuit were barred by the statute of limitations.
Trump has long accused James and other prosecutors coming after him of bias.
The judgment came in a case where Trump once again delivered potentially harmful statements during a deposition.
Trump under questioning compared his golf and real estate empire to the Mona Lisa and other priceless art works.
Trump made the extraordinary claim while describing his decision to hand off control of his business to his adult sons Don Jr. and Eric during his term as president – with New York AG Letitia James sitting across from him in a Manhattan courthouse for a deposition.
‘We have the Mona Lisas of properties,’ Trump told the prosecuting attorney in the April deposition unsealed Wednesday.
Then he bragged about his golf course in Turnberry, Scotland. ‘I could sell that. That’s like selling a painting. A painting on a wall that sells for $250 million,’ he continued.
‘I have great assets,’ Trump gushed – raving about Mar-a-Lago as well as his property at 40 Wall Street, which he said is ‘the best location,’ he told prosecutor Kevin Wallace in James’ office.
Prosecutors claim he has jacked up his net worth by between $812 million and $2.2 billion every year over a decade. James argues Trump inflated his valuations when seeking lending. Trump’s lawyers are asking a judge to toss the suit, calling it a ‘crusade’ over long-ago loans that have been repaid.
‘You don’t have a case and you should drop this case,’ Trump told James.
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