Cameras flashed as the Trump Organization’s chief financial officer surrendered to authorities at the Manhattan district attorney’s office Thursday.
Allen Weisselberg, 73, ducked into a freight entrance a day after a Manhattan grand jury indicted him and the organization in a yearslong criminal probe, Bloomberg News reported.
Weisselberg’s charges will be released later today and are expected to involve unpaid taxes on benefits, a source told the publication. The case could pressure Weisselberg to cooperate with authorities, which could lead to a more expansive case against the company.
It marks the first criminal charges against the former president’s real estate company and could lead to more.
A trial likely won’t take place before next year, and Weisselberg will have months to decide whether to fight or strike a deal with prosecutors, the publication reported. Initially, he will plead not guilty, Weisselberg’s lawyers said in a statement.
The probe is led by District Attorney Cyrus Vance, who initially focused it on the hush-money Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen paid to two women who claimed to have had affairs with Trump.
It’s gotten more complicated since then, with investigators reviewing the company’s dealings with outside businesses. New York Attorney General Letitia James joined the probe earlier this year.
Trump has denied wrongdoing, calling the probe politically motivated by Democrats. Former senior Trump adviser Jason Miller tweeted that a case against Weisselberg would be a political disaster given that Trump wasn’t included.
But legal experts said the charges against Weisselberg pose a threat to Trump, the publication reported.
“The question is not whether this is the strongest case they can make against the Trump Organization, but whether this is the strongest case they can make against Weisselberg,” a former prosecutor told the publication. “The pressure on a potential cooperating witness changes significantly when they are in the caption of an indictment. This is all about putting pressure on Weisselberg and getting him to cooperate.”
[Bloomberg News] — Cordilia James