Former president Donald Trump’s company and top corporate lieutenant Allen Weisselberg were indicted Thursday afternoon in Manhattan on charges that they hid from tax authorities $1.7 million in compensation paid to Weisselberg since 2005. Weisselberg, the company’s chief financial officer, and the Trump Organization were charged with grand larceny, tax fraud, falsifying business records, and conspiracy.
Appearing in court, assistant district attorney Carey Dunne made it clear that prosecutors think the alleged criminal activity went right to the top of the company that bears Trump’s name—and that it wasn’t just Weisselberg who benefitted.
“As spelled out in the indictment, this was a 15-year long tax fraud scheme…it was orchestrated by the most senior execs who were financially benefitting themselves and others,” she said.
Vance’s office may file additional charges in the case and, citing an “ongoing investigation,” has taken steps to limit what information has to be shared with defense attorneys through the discovery process.
According to the indictment, Weisselberg and the Trump Organization did not report the $1.7 million the company had spent on various benefits for Weisselberg and others, as employee compensation. For example, company-covered expenses like the rent on Weisselberg’s luxury apartment in a Trump-owned building were listed as “rent expense” instead of as employee compensation, allowing the company to avoid tax withholdings and its own taxes on the expenses. And Weisselberg, the indictment alleges, never reported his company-provided perks—which included his car lease, private school tuition for his grandchildren, carpets for his Florida vacation home, and direct payments of as much as $29,000 in cash—on his own tax returns.
Read the indictment below.