What’s in the New York Attorney General’s Civil Fraud Case Against Trump

New York Attorney General Letitia James Filed a civil fraud case Against former President Donald Trump Wednesday, accusing him at a press conference for an “astonishing” pattern of financial fraud.

in suitJames Trump is accused of fraudulently inflating his wealth on several “financial position statements” listing his net worth he collected from 2011 to 2021. The goal, James asserts, is “to obtain beneficial financial terms from lenders and insurers.” The lawsuit also mentions his children, Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump, and Ivanka Trump; other senior Trump Organization employees; And the Trump company itself as defendants.

James says in the lawsuit that it estimates the financial benefits from this “fraudulent scheme” at $250 million. She wants Trump to give up those benefits and be permanently barred from serving as an officer of any business entity in New York, and bar the Trump Organization from buying commercial real estate in the state for five years.

The lawsuit alleges that these misrepresentations of Trump and his staff “violated a range of state criminal laws” and “reasonably violate federal criminal law.” However, this is a civil, not a criminal case. James’ office does not have the power to bring criminal charges in this regard.

It once seemed that the Manhattan attorney general’s office, which has this authority and has deeply investigated Trump’s business practices (including exactly these things), might make such charges. But after a leadership change in that office earlier this year, the criminal investigation was halted and Two senior prosecutors have resigned.

Therefore, James said she will make a referral to federal prosecutors in the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, presenting her findings so they can decide whether criminal charges are merited. It is not clear at this point what will result from this.

As for James’ civil lawsuit, it will likely remain mired in the courts for some time, possibly for years to come. At a press conference Wednesday, James said her office declined proposed settlement From the Trump family earlier this year.

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