A new Trump-related legal development, though relatively small, is on track to bring sizeable consequences in 2022. It has nothing to do with the Big Lie or any of the other ignominies of Trump’s failed presidency. It is about an older multilevel marketing fraud that now threatens to expose Trump in an embarrassing and damning way, and it should keep Trump and his handlers up at night.
Six months ago, I wrote that the judge in the class-action lawsuit against the Trump family and Trump Organization related to a fraudulent desktop video phone service scheme they promoted on “Celebrity Apprentice” ordered Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) to let the scammed investors view hundreds of hours of never-before-seen footage. Their attorney, Robbie Kaplan, vowed to move as quickly as possible to get the recordings.
Bloomberg is now reporting that lawyers have indeed accessed the MGM tapes, after waiting for nearly two years. In a letter last week, Kaplan informed the judge that the lawyers are “working diligently to make efficient progress,” seeking unscripted chit-chat among the Trumps that could provide solid evidence of a scam.
In a follow-up letter to the judge sent yesterday, the lawyers announced they “already have identified multiple pieces of relevant footage which will serve as the basis for questioning at deposition.” According to subsequent Bloomberg reporting, the lawyers are prepared to wrap up the whole review in early January and depose Trump, Don Jr., and Ivanka before April 29.
Not only are these tapes producing the evidence the investors need to pursue justice against the Trumps, but they’re paving the way to depositions that could also serve to put Trump’s special brand of bigotry and sexism on full display. As former producer Bill Pruitt tweeted back in 2016 in the wake of the Access Hollywood tape release, this MGM footage is “far worse.” Stay tuned.