Weisselberg’s Testimony at Trial of the Trump Corporation and Trump Payroll Corp. Directly Implicated the Companies in Criminal Conduct
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin L. Bragg, Jr. today announced the sentencing of ALLEN WEISSELBERG, 75 – the Chief Financial Officer of the Trump Organization and an employee of the Trump Corporation. After testifying at the trial of the Trump Corporation and the Trump Payroll Corp. and implicating both companies in criminal conduct, WEISSELBERG was sentenced to five months in jail and five years’ probation for devising and operating a 13-year scheme to defraud federal, New York State, and New York City tax authorities, evading payment of taxes due on $1.76 million in unreported income. As part of his sentence, WEISSELBERG also paid over $2 million in back taxes, penalties and interest owed to the New York State and New York City tax authorities. On August 18, 2022, WEISSELBERG pleaded guilty in New York State Supreme Court to all 15 counts in the indictment against him, including Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree, and Criminal Tax Fraud in the Third and Fourth Degrees.
“In Manhattan, you have to play by the rules no matter who you are or who you work for. Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg used his high-level position to secure lavish work perks such as a rent-free luxury Manhattan apartment, multiple Mercedes Benz automobiles and private school tuition for his grandchildren – all without paying required taxes,” said District Attorney Bragg. “Weisselberg admitted to all counts of the indictment against him and testified in open court that for well over a decade, he carried out a fraudulent tax scheme together with others at the Trump Organization that not only enriched himself and his lifestyle by evading taxes and accountability, but also had benefits for the companies. Now, he and two Trump companies have been convicted of felonies and Weisselberg will serve a jail sentence for his crimes. These consequential felony convictions put on full display the inner workings of former President Trump’s companies and its CFO’s actions. Thank you to my office’s talented Investigation Division, prosecutors Susan Hoffinger, Joshua Steinglass, Imran Ahmed and Gary Fishman, one of our partners at the Attorney General’s Office, for their work in this case.”
According to the defendant’s plea allocution on August 18, 2022, and his testimony at trial over the course of three days on November 15, 17 and 18, 2022, from 2005 to 2018 in his role as Chief Financial Officer and together with other company employees and the Trump Corporation and Trump Payroll Corp., WEISSELBERG engaged in a scheme to defraud federal, state and city tax authorities to enrich himself and other Trump Corporation employees.
WEISSELBERG admitted that he and other Trump Corporation employees were compensated in a manner so that substantial portions of their income were intentionally unreported or misreported by the companies to the taxing authorities in order to pay less in taxes.
Furthermore, WEISSELBERG admitted that the scheme involved the failure of the companies to withhold income taxes on wages, salaries, bonuses and other forms of compensation paid to WEISSELBERG and other company employees. WEISSELBERG also admitted the scheme allowed the companies to evade the payment of payroll taxes required to be paid in connection with employee compensation.
Through this concerted effort, WEISSELBERG received his compensation in ways that enabled him to avoid reporting it to tax authorities. WEISSELBERG then purposefully concealed the compensation from his tax preparer and intentionally omitted it from his tax returns.
As a result, WEISSELBERG evaded paying taxes on a total of $1.76 million in unreported income that the Trump Corporation and Donald J. Trump paid him in the form of benefits, including paying for his rent on an apartment on Riverside Boulevard in Manhattan, utilities and garage privileges related to the apartment, multiple Mercedes Benz automobiles, private school tuition for his grandchildren, unreported cash and furnishings for his apartment and home in Florida.
None of these payments were reported as taxable income to local, state or federal tax authorities as required by law.
WEISSELBERG also admitted that the scheme involved the improper payment of substantial amounts of bonuses to certain Trump Corporation employees, including WEISSELBERG, categorized as non-employee compensation reported on IRS 1099 forms. WEISSELBERG – who was, in fact, not a self-employed individual but an employee of the Trump Corporation – was then able to falsely claim business deductions and make annual contributions to a “Keogh” tax-deferred pension plan for self-employed individuals.
The case was handled at trial by the Chief of the Investigation Division Susan Hoffinger, Senior Trial Counsel Joshua Steinglass, Special ADA Gary T. Fishman, who was cross-designated for this case, Senior Investigative Counsel Imran Ahmed, and Special ADAs Alyssa Abuhoff and Caroline Williamson.
D.A. Bragg thanked New York Attorney General Letitia James and her senior staff, particularly Gary T. Fishman, the Attorney General’s Director of Crime Proceeds Strike Force and Special Advisor to the Criminal Justice Division, for their continued partnership and collaboration.
D.A. Bragg also thanked the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance and the New York City Department of Finance for their assistance.
D.A. Bragg also thanked the following individuals for their assistance in investigating and trying the case: Assistant AG Gregory Morril, who was cross designated for this case; Investigative Analysts Gabrielle Hoessley and Serena Lu and Trial Preparation Assistant Ethan Katz of the Major Economic Crimes Bureau; Forensic Accountant Investigator Francine Wexler and Supervising Financial Investigator Wei Man Tang, under the supervision of Robert Demarest and Irene Serrapica, Chief and Principal Deputy Chief of the Forensic Accounting and Financial Investigations Bureau; and Rackets Investigator Ethan Zubkoff and Senior Rackets Investigator Anthony DiCaprio, under the supervision of Walter Alexander and Michael Wigdor, Chief and Assistant Chief Investigator.
New York, New York
- Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class C felony, one count
- Criminal Tax Fraud in the Third Degree, a class D felony, three counts
- Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree; a class E felony, one count
- Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, one count
- Criminal Tax Fraud in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, one count
- Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the First Degree, a class E felony, four counts
- Falsifying Business Records in the First Degree, a class E felony, four counts
- Five months in jail
- Five years’ probation