On Wednesday, New York Attorney General Letitia James announced her $250 million civil lawsuit against former President Donald Trump, specifically citing the testimony of former Trump attorney Michael Cohen in 2019, in which he revealed the former president’s value of had fraudulently increased its assets.
“I will remind everyone that this investigation only began after Michael Cohen, the former attorney, testified his former attorney before Congress shed light on this misconduct,” she said.
The question that prompted Mr. Cohen’s answer came in 2019 from Ms. James’ fellow New Yorker, Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
In 2019, Mr. Cohen testified against his former before the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee. At the time, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, who last year defeated former Speaker of the House Democratic Caucus, Joe Crowley, in a primaries in New York’s 14th district, questioned whether Mr. Trump had ever provided inflated assets to an insurance company. .
“Yes,” Cohen replied. When Ms. Ocasio-Cortez asked who else knew that Mr. Trump was doing this, he said, “Allen Weisselberg, Ron Lieberman and Matthew Calamari.”
The lawsuit also cited Mr. Lieberman, the former chief executive of the Trump Organization. Specifically, it said Mr. Weisselberg helped Mr. Trump make fraudulent statements about the financial condition of his properties.
“Mr. Trump made it known through Mr. Weisselberg that he wanted his net worth on his statements to increase every year, and the statements were the vehicle through which his net worth was fraudulently inflated by billions of dollars year after year,” said Ms. James’s office. . in a statement.
“And where would the committee find more information on this, do you think we should review his financial statements and his tax returns,” she said.
“Yeah, and you’d find it in the Trump Org,” Mr. Cohen said.
The lawsuit alleges that Mr Trump fraudulently inflated his assets by millions of dollars so that banks could lend him and his companies money on more favorable terms that would otherwise not be available.