Former Trump CFO close to plea deal in tax fraud case: report

Allen Weisselberg not expected to cooperate with Trump probe

From left: Donald Trump and former Trump CFO Allen Weisselberg (Photo Illustration by Steven Dilakian for The Real Deal with Getty Images)
From left: Donald Trump and former Trump CFO Allen Weisselberg (Photo Illustration by Steven Dilakian for The Real Deal with Getty Images)

One of Donald Trump’s top lieutenants is expected to plead guilty to charges related to a tax scheme, but he’s not expected to help nail the former president in another case.

Former Trump Organization chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg is approaching a deal in his tax case, the New York Times reported. Weisselberg’s lawyers and prosecutors met with a judge on Monday and a hearing has been scheduled for Thursday, indicating a possible incoming guilty plea.

Weisselberg is facing up to 15 years in prison and financial penalties for his alleged participation in the tax scheme. He’s expected to only receive a five-month sentence under a deal and could be out of jail within 100 days.

Notably, Weisselberg isn’t expected to implicate any Trump family members and will not cooperate with the criminal investigation on Trump and his company’s real estate practices. People with knowledge of the matter told the outlet the Trump Organization is not pleading guilty to its charges in the Weisselberg case at this time.

Last year, Weisselberg was indicted on felony charges, including tax fraud and grand larceny. Prosecutors claimed Weisselberg was part of a scheme where the Trump Organization provided lavish benefits to executives, such as free rent and school tuition, as untaxed compensation.

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Prosecutors have spent a year trying to get Weisselberg to flip on his former boss, to no avail. The criminal investigation into Trump’s actions regarding real estate values appears to be cooling down, as Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg doesn’t seem to be pursuing the case as vigorously as his predecessor.

A civil probe of Trump property activities led by New York Attorney General Letitia James, however, is moving along. Trump last week sat for questioning with James and repeatedly invoked the Fifth Amendment.

Cushman & Wakefield recently delivered nearly 36,000 documents to James’ office; the AG had been seeking information regarding the company’s appraisals of several Trump properties, including 40 Wall Street in Manhattan, the Seven Springs Estate in Westchester County and Trump National Golf Club in Los Angeles.

Investigators are seeking evidence that the Trump Organization illegally inflated property values for favorable loans or tax purposes. Trump and the Trump Organization have denied the allegations.

— Holden Walter-Warner