Witness list in Trump’s fraud trial features real estate heavyweights

Allen Weisselberg, Steve Witkoff and Lawrence Moens among submitted names

Trump’s Fraud Trial Will Feature Real Estate Witnesses
New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron with Donald Trump and Alina Habba (Getty)

The New York civil fraud proceedings against Donald Trump are well underway, and his real estate portfolio is taking center stage, flanked by some familiar names. 

New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron last week ruled Trump committed persistent fraud for dramatically inflating the value of his real estate assets in loan and insurance applications. He ordered the dissolution of numerous businesses that hold his most prized properties, including 40 Wall Street and Trump Tower. An appellate judge stayed that portion of the ruling Friday.

The trial that started this week will decide the details of the damages, and Trump’s attorneys are going all out to save his empire. The defense has submitted a witness list of 127 people in and around New York and Florida real estate, including Trump’s two sons and Trump himself.

Other people on the list were also at the top of the family-run firm, including its former chief financial officer: Allen Weisselberg was on paid leave from the firm when he emerged as a star witness last year for the government before pleading guilty to a 15-year tax fraud scheme. Chief legal officer Jason Greenblatt, who joined Trump’s administration as a special representative focused on relations Israel and the Palestinians, was also listed. 

Cushman & Wakefield features prominently in the case because it conducted a number of Trump property valuations that reflect values dramatically lower than what Trump claimed in loan applications. Two of the firm’s executives, Robert Nardella and Mike Papagianopoulos, are on the witness list.

Sign Up for the undefined Newsletter

Trump’s Fraud Trial Will Feature Real Estate Witnesses
Steve Witkoff and Donald Trump (Getty)

Investor Steve Witkoff, a longtime friend and associate of Trump who counted the former president among the guests at his son’s Mar-a-Lago Club wedding last year, is one of the more recognizable names to those in the real estate industry. 

Also on the list is top Palm Beach luxury broker Lawrence Moens, who has led an eponymous firm since the early 1980s and brokered some of the area’s priciest residential deals. 

Fifteen years after Moens represented Trump in his sale of an oceanfront property to Russian fertilizer billionaire for a then-record $95 million, the broker is likely to testify about Mar-a-Lago, which a tax assessor valued at $18 million. Trump has previously valued the property at as much as $1.8 billion.

See the full witness list below: