All Things Prosecutions/Lawsuits v. Citizen Trump

Go4Broke

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Can America Restore the Rule of Law Without Prosecuting Trump and Suing Him into Bankrupcty?

The stakes of prosecuting Donald Trump may be high; but so are the costs of not prosecuting him, which would send a dangerous message, one that transcends even the presidency, about the country’s commitment to the rule of law.

“This whole presidency has been about someone who thought he was above the law,” Anne Milgram, the former attorney general of New Jersey, told me. “If he isn’t held accountable for possible crimes, then he literally was above the law.”

Financial Crimes

(1) After Trump’s financial struggles in the early 2000s made it more difficult for him to borrow money from established financial institutions, he sought partnerships with private individuals like the Russian oligarch Aras Agalarov, whom Senate investigators have linked to organized crime.

(2) Trump’s real estate training program, Trump University, was essentially a pyramid scheme, encouraging consumers, in particular the elderly, to purchase high-priced seminars for supposedly proprietary investment advice that in fact came from third-party marketing companies.

(3) Trump used money raised by his nonprofit foundation to settle lawsuits against his for-profit businesses (as well as to buy a gigantic painting of himself, which he had hung at one of his golf clubs).

(4) Trump deliberately inflated the value of his assets by hundreds of millions of dollars in order to secure bank loans and cheaper insurance rates, and deflated their value to lower his tax burden.

(5) In 2010, Trump took a $72.9 million tax refund for an abandoned Atlantic City casino venture, which would require him to have received absolutely nothing in return for his investment, and he appears to have grossly overstated the value of several properties in order to claim larger deductions known as conservation easements.

(6) During Trump’s years on “The Apprentice,” he wrote off $70,000 in haircuts as a business expense. He also wrote off the expenses associated with a family compound in Westchester County by classifying it as an investment property, and he paid his daughter Ivanka more than $740,000 in consulting fees when she was an employee of the Trump Organization.

(7) Given Trump’s history of doing business with foreign actors with a demonstrated need to conceal the sources of their income, another one might be money laundering.

Election-Law Violations

(8) Days before the first Republican nominating caucuses, he used his foundation to host a televised fund-raiser for military veterans and then redirected millions of the dollars in donations to his campaign, prompting an investigation by the New York State attorney general, Eric Schneiderman. (The foundation was eventually fined $2 million for the misappropriation of funds and shut down under court supervision.)

(9) When Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to violating two campaign-finance laws in the Southern District of New York, he testified in federal court that Trump directed him to arrange for the hush-money payments. Trump was part of the investigation, but was protected by the Justice Department policy against indicting a sitting president. He was instead named an unindicted co-conspirator in the case — “Individual-1,” as the prosecution’s filings called him.

Obstruction of Justice

(10) The laws governing contributions to inaugural committees are far more forgiving than those governing campaign finance. Nevertheless, Trump’s inaugural committee appears to have broken a number of them. The committee may have violated its nonprofit status by paying more than $1 million to rent event space at Trump’s new Washington hotel — well above market rate and the hotel’s own pricing guidelines — and spending another $300,000 to rent a room in the hotel for a private, after-hours party for Trump’s children.

(11) The inaugural committee’s disclosure report to the Federal Election Commission contained dozens of false entries; it reported, for instance, that Katherine Johnson — the NASA mathematician who was one of the subjects of the movie “Hidden Figures” and was then 98 years old — had contributed $25,000, listing her address as the address for NASA’s research center in Hampton, Va. (Johnson did not contribute to the committee, nor did she reside at NASA.)

(12) The inaugural committee’s activities have already prompted federal prosecutions. The Republican lobbyist Samuel Patten pleaded guilty in 2018 to illegally arranging for a Ukrainian oligarch to purchase four tickets to the inaugural for $50,000. And a venture capitalist in California, Imaad Zuberi, pleaded guilty earlier this year to trying to hide from investigators the source of a portion of the $900,000 contribution he made to the committee.

(13) Just a few months into Trump’s presidency, the news broke that the F.B.I. had begun an investigation into his campaign’s links to Russia. Trump tried to derail it. His first attorney general, Jeff Sessions, had recused himself from the inquiry because he had been involved with the campaign; Trump pressed him to “un-recuse” himself. He also pressed the director of the F.B.I., James Comey, to announce that he wasn’t a target of the investigation and to back off his former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, who pleaded guilty to lying to investigators about a meeting with the Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak.

(14) Trump eventually fired Comey, which led to the appointment of Mueller as special counsel, and Mueller took over the investigation. Trump soon tried to stop Mueller too, ordering his White House counsel, Donald McGahn, to fire him. When the story of Trump’s order — and McGahn’s refusal to follow it — became public, Trump told McGahn to publicly deny it and ordered him to create a false record to substantiate the lie. (He didn’t.)

(15) As Mueller’s investigation continued and started claiming its first victims, Trump floated the idea of pardoning a potential witness against him — his former campaign manager Manafort, who was convicted of eight felonies and pleaded guilty to two others.

(16) When Mueller’s report was released in the spring of 2019, more than 700 former federal prosecutors from Republican and Democratic administrations signed an open letter stating that if those same acts had been committed by anyone but the president, they would have resulted in multiple felony charges.

Public Corruption

(17) Trump could test still more legal boundaries, leveraging his “unitary” authority over the nation’s foreign affairs for political purposes. For this, he needed the help of a very different sort of lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, who set the scheme in motion. The plan called for holding back from Ukraine $391 million in congressionally approved military aid until the country’s newly elected president, Volodymyr Zelensky, agreed to investigate two debunked conspiracy theories — one casting doubt on Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, the other raising ethical questions about Joe Biden. United States diplomats, including the ambassador to the European Union and the special envoy to Ukraine, were pressed into service to aid in the effort.

Partisan Coercion

(18) As the 2020 election approached, Trump appeared emboldened by his years of presidential unaccountability. Thanks to his self-compounding liability, he was also confronting an increasingly urgent need to retain it. Trump, meanwhile, continued to test the limits of his seemingly limitless authority. He pushed out five inspectors general charged with overseeing the conduct of the executive branch, commuted Stone’s prison sentence and openly defied the authority of the other two branches of government in an effort to stoke his political base.

(19) The Hatch Act has criminal provisions from which the president is not exempt; one is the prohibition against using one’s official authority to influence a federal election. “That’s the very heart of the Hatch Act,” Kathleen Clark, a professor of legal and government ethics at the law school at Washington University in St. Louis, told me. “Public power is for public good, not for private good.” Trump’s flagrant violations of this prohibition were widely noted at the time of the Republican
convention.

U.S. Capitol Insurrection

CLAIM: The FBI has cleared President Donald Trump “of any guilt, any connection” to the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.
AP’S ASSESSMENT: False. There is no record of the federal law enforcement agency making such a statement.
THE FACTS: On Wednesday, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to impeach Trump for “incitement of insurrection.” President Donald Trump had urged his supporters to come to Washington on Jan. 6 to protest election results on the day Congress was set to certify Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 presidential election. At a rally that day, Trump told his supporters, “We fight like hell and if you don’t fight like hell, you’re not going to have a country anymore.” As he was speaking, his supporters began storming the Capitol in what became a deadly siege.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/17/magazine/trump-investigations-criminal-prosecutions.html?action=click&module=Top Stories&pgtype=Homepage

https://apnews.com/article/fact-checking-afs:Content:9920241957
 
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MplsGopher

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What are the most likely cases/crimes that he can be convicted of? Obviously have to be state crimes, he will be pardon of all future federal crimes, one way or another.
 

MennoSota

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Yawn. Obama got off free as did Clinton. The oligarchy does what it wills without recrimination...
 

Go4Broke

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The Senate Acquitted Trump. His Legal Problems Are Just Starting

The Senate acquitted Donald Trump, again, but the former president’s legal worries are far from over. As a private citizen, Trump is no longer protected by the Justice Department’s policy against charging a sitting president with federal crimes. And Trump, his family and businesses, also have to worry about investigations in various local jurisdictions and at least one foreign country, lawsuits he used his presidency to dodge, and probes by congressional committees. Here are some highlights:

Washington, DC:

Prosecutors under Karl Racine, the District’s Attorney General, are considering charging Trump with violating a DC law against encouraging violence, CNN reported Friday.
Racine said last month that prosecutors could charge Trump with “a misdemeanor, a six-month-in-jail maximum,” for inciting the January attack on Congress. Racine has also sued Trump’s 2017 inaugural committee, charging it improperly funneled money to Trump’s DC hotel. That case remains active. Ivanka Trump sat for a deposition in the case in December, and investigators are working to depose Donald Trump, Jr.

Georgia:

Prosecutors in the Peach State have opened a criminal investigation into Trump’s efforts to overturn Georgia’s election results, where Joe Biden narrowly defeated Trump
. Last week, a Democratic prosecutor in Georgia’s Fulton County sent a letter to numerous state officials, requesting that they preserve documents related to “an investigation into attempts to influence” the state’s 2020 presidential election, the New York Times reported. At issue are calls Trump and his allies made, including Trump’s January 2 call to Georgia Secretary of Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. In that call, which Raffensperger recorded, Trump urged him to “find 11,780 votes,” one more vote than the margin by which Trump lost the state. Raffensperger’s office has also launched its own investigation into Trump’s efforts to pressure Georgia officials.

New York:

New York Attorney General Letitia James is conducting a civil investigation into whether the Trump Organization inflated the values of his assets to win favorable loans and insurance coverage.

Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance is also looking into loans Trump took out on some of his signature Manhattan properties, the Wall Street Journal reported Saturday.
That’s part of Vance’s wide-ranging probe into what his office has described as “possibly extensive and protracted criminal conduct at the Trump Organization” that could include insurance fraud, tax fraud, or other schemes to avoid taxes and cook the books to win favorable loan terms.

Scotland:

The Scottish Parliament recently voted down a nonbinding measure calling for an anti–money laundering investigation into the finances of two resorts Trump owns in the country. But Trump’s Scottish critics remain suspicious that the properties, in which Trump has invested nearly $300 million without ever showing a profit, have been used to launder funds. The vote does not mean the country’s prosecutors aren’t investigating the money-losing resorts, Mother Jones has reported. Some Scottish officials have said it signals that the parliament wants to keep politics out of any probe into the properties’ finances that may already be underway. Scottish investigators will neither confirm nor deny if an investigation is in progress, leaving it unclear what legal issues Trump faces there.

Lawsuits:

Trump’s two impeachments and other legal problems have distracted from the more than 26 allegations of sexual misconduct he still faces. Trump has denied all of those allegations. In doing so, he opened the door for women who say they are his victims to sue him for defamation.

E. Jean Carroll, a longtime advice columnist who says Trump raped her in a department store dressing room in late 1995 or early 1996, is pressing a such a suit.

Former Apprentice contestant Summer Zervos, who alleges Trump sexually assaulted her in 2007, has also sued him for defamation.

Trump used the powers of the presidency to delay and fight those suits
. He used the Secret Service to help him evade service of a court summons and claimed he was too busy to be deposed. He “claimed presidential immunity in state court, argued that he couldn’t be sued in New York because of his temporary residence in the White House, and had the Department of Justice intervene on his behalf,” Mother Jones has reported. Now those protections are gone. Lawyers for Zervos and Carroll, noting his arguments for delay are rendered moot by his defeat, are pressing judges to let them proceed with their cases.

Congress:

Congressional committees, all run by Democrats, are free to investigate all aspects of Trump’s conduct as president and as a private citizen. Notably, the House Judiciary Committee says it is still fighting to enforce subpoenas it issued in 2019 as part of its probe into Trump’s alleged obstruction of justice aimed at undermining Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Trump’s ties to Russia, among other things. That means the panel could still hear testimony about Trump’s alleged criminal conduct as president. And while Mueller declined to charge Trump with obstruction of justice due to a DOJ policy against indicting a sitting president, Merrick Garland’s Justice Department could still file charges against private citizen Trump.

https://www.motherjones.com/mojo-wi...d-trump-his-legal-problems-are-just-starting/
 
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GoodasGold

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I may sue Trump for his being feloniously stupid.
 
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