A detail in the indictment of Allen Weisselberg, the longtime chief financial officer of the Trump Organization, has caught the eye of legal experts who say it could be bad news for former President Donald Trump, according to a New Yorker report published Wednesday.
Prosecutors at the Manhattan district attorney’s office charged both Weisselberg and the Trump Organization in July, alleging a 15-year scheme to defraud tax authorities to heavily compensate certain executives at the company off the books.
Among the sprawling allegations, according to the New Yorker, is one that accuses Weisselberg of erasing portions of entries in a ledger called “Donald J. Trump’s Detail General Ledger” during the 2016 presidential campaign. The alleged entries were for tuition payments for Weisselberg’s grandchildren.
Per the New Yorker, people familiar with Trump’s legal troubles noticed one particular element of that allegation: the name of the ledger.
“My jaw literally dropped when I saw that,” Tristan Snell, a former New York assistant attorney general who worked on the Trump University case, told the New Yorker.
“If there was a ledger for him, it blows up the notion that Trump didn’t know about it—it means there was a set of numbers prepared for Donald Trump.”
He told the magazine the public disclosure of the ledger’s existence was a message from prosecutors to Trump: “We have your ledger.”
Weisselberg, who has worked for the Trump family since the 1970s, was reportedly removed from his leadership positions at dozens of Trump Organization subsidiary companies in July following his arrest but retained his CFO title. He and the company both pleaded not guilty to all charges and Trump has dismissed it as a “witch hunt.”
New York Attorney General Letitia James indicated this week that more charges are likely to emerge in her office’s years-long investigation into Trump’s business empire.
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