By Oyintari Ben
As the former US president prepares to run for politics once more in 2024, Donald Trump’s real estate business has been found guilty of participating in a 15-year-long criminal plot to defraud tax authorities.
The judge presiding over the trial in New York state court will decide the precise punishment amount at a later date. The Trump Organization, which manages hotels, golf courses, and other real estate throughout the world, is facing penalties following its conviction on Tuesday.
Trump was not accused in the case, and the corporation had pleaded not guilty.
The judge designated January 13 as the day of sentencing.
A conviction by a jury might make it more difficult for the Trump Organization to conduct business by frightening lenders and partners, even though the fine is not anticipated to be significant for a corporation of its magnitude.
The Trump Organization case centred on allegations that the business gave top employees, including former chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg, free rent and car leases without disclosing the income and gave them bonuses as though they were independent contractors.
In his closing remarks to the jury on Friday, the prosecutor, Joshua Steinglass, stated that the smorgasbord of incentives was put in place to keep the company’s top executives content and devoted.
Separately, Letitia James, the attorney general of New York State, has filed a fraud action against The Trump Organization.
The US Department of Justice is looking into Trump’s handling of confidential government records after he left office in January 2021.
A congressional committee is also looking into Trump’s attempts to rig the 2020 election, which he lost to Democrat Joe Biden.
As part of a plea agreement with the prosecution, Weisselberg, 75, testified as the government’s star witness. He will serve a maximum of five months in prison.
The Trump Organization contended that Weisselberg orchestrated the plan for personal gain. He stated that he collected more than $1 million in salary and bonus payments this year while on paid leave from the company.