NEW YORK — Prosecutors in the Trump Organization’s criminal tax fraud trial dropped the case earlier than expected Monday, say two top executives who broke off the deal before testifying that they planned to evade taxes on perks paid by the company. in the hopes of convicting Donald Trump’s company. .
The company’s longtime finance chief, Allen Weisselberg, and senior vice president and auditor, Jeffrey McConney, testified on most of the prosecution’s eight-day case, admitting wrongdoing in a trial that was heavy with numbers, spreadsheets and taxes. Return and Payroll Records.
Weisselberg, who pleaded guilty to tax evasion on $1.7 million in extras in August, was forced to testify as a prosecution witness as part of the conviction in exchange for a promise of five months in prison. McConney was granted immunity from testimony.
The Trump Organization’s attorneys are expected to begin calling witnesses Monday afternoon, starting with an accountant who has handled years of tax returns and other financial matters for Trump, the Trump Organization and hundreds of Trump entities.
Prosecutors considered calling Mazars USA LLP partner, accountant Donald Bender, but decided not to. The defense said they would call him instead.
Prosecutors called three other witnesses: the Trump Organization’s accounts payables supervisor, a forensic accountant from the Manhattan District Attorney’s office, and a state tax inspector on the witness stand Monday examined Weisselberg’s taxes.
See also: Ex-AG Barr says Justice Department likely has enough evidence to ‘lawfully’ prosecute Trump.
Weisselberg, now a senior adviser to the firm, testified last week that he conspired with his subordinate McConney to hide more than 10 years of additional wealth from taxable income, but neither Trump nor his family were involved.
McConney testified that Weisselberg and another executive, Michael Calamari Sr., relied on him for years to falsify payroll records to hide additional items such as a Manhattan apartment and a Mercedes-Benz car from taxable income. Issue a forged W-2 form.
Manhattan prosecutors allege that the Trump Organization was at fault because it helped top executives avoid paying taxes on company-paid perks and because Weisselberg was a “senior administrative agent” acting on behalf of the company.
The tax fraud case is the only trial in the Manhattan District Attorney’s three-year investigation into Trump and his business practices. If convicted, the company could face fines of $1 million or more and difficulties closing the deal.
Trump posted on the Truth social platform last week, blaming Bender and Mazar for the company’s problems. Very unfair!”
Mazars cut ties with Trump in February and said she “must no longer rely” on the annual financial statements she prepared for Trump after New York Attorney General Letitia James said she regularly misrepresented her asset values.
James sued Trump and his companies in September, accusing them of boosting their billions of dollars in net worth and habitually misleading banks and others about the value of assets such as golf courses, hotels and Mar-a-Lago real estate.
Trump’s financial statements are not part of the criminal case.
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