Letitia James ready to seize Trump assets to cover penalty

New York AG mentions 40 Wall Street as one possible target

Letitia James Ready to Seize Trump Assets to Cover Penalty

From left: A photo illustration of New York State Attorney General Letitia James and Donald Trump along with 40 Wall Street (Getty, Sterlfilms, CC BY-SA 4.0 – via Wikimedia Commons)

Donald Trump may not have been banned from New York real estate, but his assets are still at risk if the former president can’t pay the penalty attached to last week’s civil fraud verdict.

New York Attorney General Letitia James told ABC News that her office could seek a judge’s permission to seize Trump buildings if he fails to cover his $355 million fine. With interest, that could bring the total penalty to $450 million. 

In her comments, James made specific mention of 40 Wall Street, one of the properties to emerge in Trump’s civil case. James alleged that the property’s valuation was fraudulently inflated by nearly $200 million. Fitch downgraded a security attached to the property last year.

Trump will likely have some time before he needs to fret about losing the Financial District tower, as the former president is almost certain to appeal. James said that she is “very confident” that her office will prevail upon appeal.

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At the end of last week, Judge Arthur Engoron decided penalties for Trump and the Trump Organization’s inflation of building values. Trump and several of his top allies, including his adult sons, received a $364 million judgment. 

While James sought a New York real estate ban for Trump, Engoron instead banned the former president from being an officer or director of a company in the state for three years; Eric and Donald Jr. received the same punishment for two years.

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The Trump Organization also wasn’t hit with the “corporate death penalty” that would have forced the company to sell some of its prized assets in New York. Engoron spared the company from that, and even reversed his earlier revocation of some company operating certificates.

Holden Walter-Warner