Here’s what is being said.
According to an attorney who appeared on MSBC’s “Inside with Jen Psaki,” there is a possibility that Donald Trump may need to divest his Mar-a-Lago property as a consequence of potential legal repercussions from his civil fraud trial in New York. The lawyer, George Conway, a well-known critic of the former president, discussed the situation in an interview with Jen Psaki.
According to Newsweek, the trial is a result of a lawsuit filed in 2022 by New York Attorney General Letitia James, in which she alleged that Trump and top executives at The Trump Organization conspired to manipulate financial statements presented to banks and insurers. This manipulation was purportedly intended to inflate Trump’s net worth by billions of dollars, facilitating favorable loan terms and insurance deals.
In a development from September, Judge Arthur Engoron issued a partial summary judgment in the civil fraud trial, finding that Trump had engaged in fraudulent activities. Engoron determined that Trump had significantly overstated the value of his assets to obtain more advantageous terms from lenders and insurers. He specifically stated that “the documents here clearly contain fraudulent valuations that defendants used in business.”
Attorney General Letitia James is seeking $250 million in damages and the revocation of Trump’s business licenses. The latter request has been granted by the judge but is currently on hold due to an appeal filed by Trump’s legal team. It’s important to note that Trump has consistently denied any wrongdoing throughout this legal process.
George Conway discussed the implications of the case, characterizing it as a severe blow to Trump’s business interests. He pointed out that Trump has already been found to have committed fraud, with the judge ruling that there was no factual dispute regarding the falsehood of his financial statements. This led to an order invalidating Trump’s ability to conduct business in New York, including the businesses owned by New York LLCs, such as Mar-a-Lago. The issue at hand is the distribution of the proceeds from these sales when Trump is forced to liquidate his assets and go out of business, with a significant portion potentially going to the state of New York.
Conway emphasized that the right of Trump and The Trump Organization to do business in New York has been revoked, along with the certificates of incorporation for various LLCs and companies owned by Trump that are based in New York. This, in effect, prohibits Trump from engaging in business activities in the state.
Regarding the ongoing trial, Trump’s children are expected to testify later in the week, while Trump himself is expected to take the stand the following Monday, November 6.
In addition to the New York case, Trump is currently facing other legal challenges. The state of Colorado has initiated a trial to determine whether he should be disqualified from appearing on the state’s presidential ballot in 2024 under the 14th Amendment’s prohibition on insurrectionists running for office. Trump’s representatives have labeled this lawsuit as “political” and argue that it aims to prevent him from running for office and deny Colorado voters the opportunity to vote for him. They contend that there is no legal basis for barring a presidential candidate under the 14th Amendment and maintain that Trump did not advocate for or incite violence on January 6, 2021.