Donald Trump’s real estate company, The Trump Organization, and its long-time chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg, were charged Thursday with engaging a 15-year-long tax fraud and avoidance scheme. Weisselberg and the company pleaded not guilty to the criminal charges brought by the Manhattan district attorney’s office that allege that Weisselberg did not declare nor pay taxes on $1.7 million in income.
Trump’s parent company and its payroll division were charged with a “scheme to defraud” federal and New York state and city tax authorities by making off the books payments to Weisselberg and other Trump Organization employees. Weisselberg is charged with grand larceny in the second degree and tax fraud.
The indictment alleges that Trump Organization executives received “substantial portions of their income through indirect and disguised means” for a period beginning in 2005 and continuing until June 30, 2021 – yesterday.
This is the first criminal case New York authorities’ probe has yielded. Prosecutor Carey Dunne described a 15-year scheme “orchestrated by the most senior executives,” including CFO Allen Weisselberg, that was “sweeping and audacious.”
According to the indictment, Weisselberg did not report the income to his tax preparer and intentionally omitted the compensation from his tax returns to avoid paying more than $556,000 in federal income taxes, $106,000 in New York state income taxes and just under a quarter million dollars in income taxes to New York City.