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Allen Weisselberg Might Have Just Flipped on Donald Trump

Newsweek 3/30/2023 Ewan Palmer
Former Trump Organization Executive Allen Weisselberg arrives for a sentencing hearing at Manhattan Criminal Court on January 10, 2023 in New York City. © Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images Former Trump Organization Executive Allen Weisselberg arrives for a sentencing hearing at Manhattan Criminal Court on January 10, 2023 in New York City.

Speculation is increasing that former Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg may have turned on Donald Trump as he is no longer represented by lawyers paid for by the former president's company.

Weisselberg, who is currently serving five months in the infamous Rikers Island jail in New York after pleading guilty to 15 felony counts relating to a tax evasion scheme carried out by The Trump Organization, is said to have parted ways with his lawyers, Nick Gravante and Mary Mulligan, WNBC reported.

There are suggestions that Weisselberg could face further charges in connection to the Manhattan District Attorney's Office investigation into the hush money Trump allegedly asked his former attorney Michael Cohen to pay adult film star Stormy Daniels to keep an affair she allegedly had with the former president a secret ahead of the 2016 election. Prosecutors are probing whether the payment may have amounted to a campaign violation.

Investigators are also looking into whether any records were falsified when Cohen was reimbursed for the $130,000 sum he paid Daniels, which was listed by The Trump Organization as legal fees.

The timing of Weisselberg parting ways with his Trump lawyers has resulted in suggestions he may have been about to, or already has, flipped on the former president, so the 75-year-old doesn't end up spending more time in prison. Weisselberg already agreed to testify in The Trump Organization fraud trial in exchange for his potential jail sentence being reduced from 15 years to five months, but he didn't implicate the former president.


Karen Agnifilo, former chief assistant district attorney of the Manhattan D.A.'s office, told MSNBC she is "very intrigued" that Weisselberg is no longer represented by Gravante and Mulligan.

"It can mean one of two things. Number one, the case is over and doesn't need lawyers anymore, they were just representing them on that one case," Agnifilo said. "Or, more likely, is there was this pressure campaign put on him saying while he's in Rikers, 'do you like being there? Because we're about to bring other charges.'

"If he testified in the grand jury, you wouldn't necessarily know it because he'd be brought into the backdoor because he's incarcerated," Agnifilo added. "So unlike the other people Michael Cohen, or [attorney] Bob Costello, who told people that testified and we know about them because we see them going in and out of the building. You wouldn't necessarily see Allen Weisselberg. So it's possible he's already testified, we just don't know."

The Twitter account for left-wing political blog the Palmer Report also speculated that Weisselberg may be cooperating with prosecutors, and that's why the Manhattan grand jury hasn't yet voted on whether to indict Trump over the hush money.

"Weisselberg is currently sitting behind bars. It's a short prison sentence but he is an elderly man. And it's possible the DA threatened to bring broader charges against him, with additional prison time, to motivate him to flip," the account tweeted.

"If Weisselberg has flipped on Trump, it would explain why the DA didn't meet with the grand jury and indict Trump today [Wednesday]. Weisselberg would need to be prepped to testify, which takes time."

In response, former Deputy Assistant Attorney General Harry Litman tweeted: "Offhand hard to think of a better explanation. And yes it does square, with all of the puzzling data."

The Daily Beast is reporting that Weisselberg is now being represented by defense lawyer Seth L. Rosenberg, who previously served as chief of the Rackets Bureau at the Manhattan District Attorney's Office under Robert M. Morgenthau. Newsweek has contacted Rosenberg for comment via email.

Hank Sheinkopf, a Democratic strategist based in New York, previously suggested that despite Weisselberg's loyalty to Trump stretching back decades, it is not unlikely he would flip on the former president while in custody.

"He's a family man, very private, and he's had this one major job in his entire life, which is being the day to day operator with the Trump Organization," Sheinkopf told Newsweek.

"Now he's going to be put in a place that he never dreamed about, which is prison. So the possibilities of Weisselberg turning on Trump are not not small."

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