As she has repeatedly proven over the course of the ongoing fraud trial against former president Donald Trump and the Trump Organization, New York Attorney Letitia James has a factual retort for every so-called defense Trump’s legal team puts forth.
One of those witnesses sounded like he was testifying for the prosecution, according to Business Insider.
When it comes to Donald Trump’s estimates of his net worth, “questionable” and “inconsistencies” are words you’d expect to hear only from his accuser, the state of New York.
But on Wednesday, Trump’s third day of presenting defense witnesses for his Manhattan fraud trial, an expert accountant took the stand in the former president’s defense for a second day and used these very words to describe the creative math at the center of the case.
“It’s certainly a red flag for me,” testified the expert, Jason Flemmons, referring to an internal Trump Organization spreadsheet from 2016 displayed on overhead screens in the lower Manhattan courtroom.
And then there was Steven Laposa, who admitted that he isn’t an expert on real estate appraisals.
Laposa said the attorney general’s approach to valuation was “flawed” because it relied on a market value analysis of Trump’s properties. He argued it should have been based on the investment value, which takes into account the owner’s investment requirements.
When Laposa returned to the stand Friday, a lawyer for the attorney general’s office asked him if he had any experience reviewing personal financial statements. Laposa said no.
That led AG James to lay waste to the Trump defense, which is crumbling almost as quickly as the Trump Organization itself.
In a video she posted online, James noted that most of the people testifying in Trump’s behalf aren’t experts at all. They’re just golfing buddies.
James then focused in on why she didn’t believe a word Trump’s defenders had said in court and under oath.
“Their accounting expert has never once worked on the types of financial statements at the heart of Donald Trump’s fraud,” she explained.
“Their expert on real estate finance admitted that he not only lacks experience in valuing real estate, but he also does not have any experience with the accounting standards and personal financial statements that this case revolves around.”
Some of the witnesses, James continued, do other connections to Trump: They’ve donated money to him and been buddies for years.
Tish James is a boss, and she’s got Donnie’s number.