After his crocodile tears on the stand, Allen Weisselberg finally gave some information to prosecutors that might make his deal worth it. Weisselberg earlier testified that he “betrayed” the Trump family by “scheming to dodge taxes” on his company-paid perks totaling $1.7 million. He made it sound as if he did this all on his own, claiming that Trump nor any of his family members were involved. Weisselberg chose to “fall on his sword” for Trump and his family. It is interesting to note that though Weisselberg is a former CFO, Fortune reported that he continues to earn a $640,000 salary even though he is obviously doing no work for the family. Sounds like “hush money.” As Trump’s defense attorneys hammered away at Weisselberg, making him the “bad guy,” he testified that his activities were of benefit to the company as well. He also discussed another scheme that saved the company money for years.
Trump was very much involved in Weisselberg’s schemes. According to Fortune, Trump personally signed checks for private school tuition for Weisselberg’s grandchildren, Weisselberg’s apartment lease, and the company’s Christmas bonus checks, which Forbes reported Trump stuffed in stockings and handed out like he was Santa Claus. Trump also personally signed the cards in which the checks were placed. Perhaps after Weisselberg took the blame for everything and was still being browbeaten by Trump’s attorneys, he not only said the earlier things, but late last week, he revealed more damning information about Donald Trump.
Maria Pierides of SheFinds reported that Weisselberg testified that Trump “authorized” the payment of Weisselberg’s rent and other perks. Testifying in open court, Weisselberg said that not only was Donald Trump involved, but Don Jr. and Eric were also involved. According to Weisselberg, Trump claimed the untaxed benefits were “convenient for the company.” Of course, they were convenient. Incorrect classification of these perks saved the company millions in taxes. Weisselberg testified that in 2012, Donald Jr. brought tuition checks for his children to his father for signature, and Trump said: “I may as well pay for your grandkids too.” Weisselberg then said that he lowered his own salary by the tuition amount to pay back the money, which in turn reduced his tax liability and that of the company. Other unclaimed perks included the $200,000 per year apartment, two Mercedes Benzes, and cash to hand out as tips.
Trump’s attorneys, of course, claim Weisselberg was behind the scheme alone, but let’s be real: what company would allow a CFO to hand out these types of gifts to himself? If the transactions weren’t authorized, then he defrauded the organization, and in either instance, it is virtually impossible that a corporation like Trump Organization was blind to the transfer of millions of dollars. No corporation would be in business very long if it were this easy to bilk them. Further supporting the notion that Trump was involved, the company began covering up his involvement when he won the presidency in 2016. If there was nothing to hide, why was it hidden? Weisselberg also testified to the fact that the company went through a “massive cleanup” after the election, all of which reeks of Trump’s involvement.
Shirley is a former entertainment writer and has worked in the legal field for over 25 years