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Lawyers for Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg expect ‘other indictments’

New York Daily News logo New York Daily News 9/20/2021 Molly Crane-Newman, New York Daily News
a man wearing a suit and tie: Trump Organization finance chief Allen Weisselberg appears in a New York court after turning himself in to authorities on July 1, 2021, in New York City. © Seth Wenig-Pool/Getty Images North America/TNS Trump Organization finance chief Allen Weisselberg appears in a New York court after turning himself in to authorities on July 1, 2021, in New York City.

NEW YORK — More indictments are likely coming in Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance’s investigation of the Trump Organization, lawyers for the company’s chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, said Monday.

“We have strong reason to believe there could be other indictments coming. Again, we are shooting at a moving target,” Weisselberg’s attorney Bryan Skarlatos said.

The remark came during Weisselberg’s first appearance in Manhattan Supreme Court since he pleaded not guilty to a 15-year scheme to cover up alleged cheating on the Trump Organization’s taxes.

Weisselberg’s defense team asked Judge Juan Merchan for more time to sift through more than 6 million pages of evidence. The expected indictments, he argued, were further reason to pump the brakes on the case with high stakes for the company that helped make Trump famous.

“I just ask, what is the rush other than for the district attorney’s office to try to get an unfair tactical advantage with respect to Mr. Weisselberg by forcing us to make motions, change motions, and drop motions we already made?” Skarlatos said.

Weisselberg’s defense team would need to work 24 hours a day, seven days a week, processing more than 30,000 pages per day to be prepared on the current schedule for the case, the lawyer said.

“It’s just not possible. It’s a Herculean task,” Skarlatos said. “We don’t even know what we’re shooting at.”

Evidence was still emerging.


Video: Attorney for Allen Weisselberg suggests more indictments could be coming during court appearance (MSNBC)

Attorney for Allen Weisselberg suggests more indictments could be coming during court appearance
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Vance’s prosecutors revealed in a closed-door conference that they discovered new documents in Weisselberg's basement, Skarlatos said. Prosecutors handed over that new batch of paperwork to the defense prior to the hearing.

“When we were back in chambers, it was represented to us by the district attorney this package includes documents that were found in co-conspirators’ basements that are tax documents that go directly to the issues,” Skarlatos said.

Merchan set the next court date for Jan. 20, 2022. The judge expects trial to begin in roughly one year.

Weisselberg and the Trump Organization were charged in June with dodging taxes on more than $1.7 million in income over 15 years.

The scheme involved untaxed fringe benefits for Weisselberg including an apartment overlooking Central Park, another on the Upper West Side, a Mercedes-Benz and other luxuries, according to Manhattan prosecutors.

In a statement, lawyers for Weisselberg said the indictment against him — which carries a possible sentence of 15 years in prison — contains inaccuracies and that he maintains his innocence.

“We have studied the indictment and it is full of unsupported and flawed factual and legal assertions regarding Allen Weisselberg. We look forward to challenging those assertions in court,” Skarlatos and attorney Mary Mulligan said.

Weisselberg’s lawyers said they fear he’ll become “collateral damage” in Vance’s bid to bring down the Trump Organization.

But Assistant District Attorney Solomon Shinerock responded that Weisselberg was no bystander.

He described the veteran CFO as a well-compensated executive who intentionally avoided tax obligations.

“Mr. Weisselberg has been with the Trump Organization for 35 years, and he is the chief financial officer. And while he may not have technical access to certain of the Trump Organization records, with respect to the relevant financial records, Mr. Weisselberg is the boss,” Shinerock said.

“Mr. Weisselberg is also not an innocent party being caught up as collateral damage here. He’s an executive who stands accused by a grand jury of multiple felonies, including fraud and tax evasion.”

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