First things first. Let’s admit that when it comes to Donald Trump, those of us who loathe him are always chomping at the bits and impatiently waiting for the day he’s indicted and booked for the crimes he’s committed.
Now that we have that out of the way, the time has come to take a close look at the case that has already been filed against the Trump Organization and its CFO, Allen Weisselberg, who is facing decades behind bars if he doesn’t agree to cooperate with prosecutors and testify against his boss.
This leads us to an incredibly illuminating article from Andrea Bernstein of The New Yorker, who notes:
Even if no additional charges are filed, the former President’s company faces a potential reckoning. The charging documents and interviews with former prosecutors and white-collar defense lawyers indicate that the District Attorney is accumulating evidence of pervasive tax fraud. The case goes to the heart of what made—and still makes—Trump Trump.
Of course, as he so often does, Donald will likely toss Weisselberg under the bus and claim he had no idea that illegal activity was taking place at his company.
So is there any possible way to prove that Trump did indeed know Weissselberg was inflating the value of the Trump Organization in order to get loans from banks and then deflating the values when it came time to pay taxes?
One section of the indictment against Weisselberg and the Trump Organization shows that the former president won’t be able to claim ignorance of the crimes committed in his name:
People familiar with Trump’s legal battles also took notice of one element of the allegation: Weisselberg is described as making changes to something called “Donald J. Trump’s Detail General Ledger.” If true, the allegation would mean that, in addition to Weisselberg and Trump’s accountants keeping a set of records detailing the company’s finances, there was another ledger, one specifically maintained, the name implies, for Donald J. Trump. “My jaw literally dropped when I saw that,” Tristan Snell, a former New York assistant attorney general, who investigated claims of fraud against Trump University that resulted in a twenty-five-million-dollar settlement, said. “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.” Snell said the public disclosure of the separate ledger’s existence is a signal from the prosecutors to the former President: “We have your ledger.”
They have his ledger. And the ledger shows that crimes were committed and Donald Trump knew about them. He was fully aware of the massive levels of bank and tax fraud. He knew and he condoned it. It can even be said that he expected those who worked for him to do whatever was necessary to help him commit the fraud.
Donald Trump is going to prison. There’s no way to predict when, but it will happen. We’ll just have to tamp down our impatience and wait. But it certainly sounds like the wait will be worthwhile and richly rewarded.