- If New York accedes to its demands, legal experts predict the lawsuit “would effectively be the death knell for Mr. Trump doing business” in the state.
- A New York-specific bailout could have a negative impact on Trump’s brand and ability to do business internationally.
When faced with charges that carry up to hundreds of years in prison, you’d think Donald Trump would only have a few criminal cases on his mind.
But the former president has been posting on social media for weeks about his civil fraud trial in New York, sometimes appearing in court unnecessarily. His relentless focus on calling the case “a sham,” the trial “grossly unfair,” the state attorney general a “political hack,” and the judge a “radical Trump hater” points to a real danger to his finances. is reflected. and reputation.
Trump biographer Michael D’Antonio said, “For years, Trump has said things like, “My beauty is that I’m very rich,” and “Nobody knows how rich I really am.” “The facts are proving to be less impressive than he led people to believe.”
The stakes are certainly high for a lawsuit that does not threaten Trump’s freedom.From hundreds of millions of dollars to his ability to run a New York company again to his condition. Public image as a business giantDonald Trump has a lot to lose.
President Trump fights to protect his business and image
The 2024 Republican presidential front-runner is responding to a lawsuit brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James, with judges, government lawyers and numerous witnesses calling the former president a fraud.
He has been sparred in court over a gag order, attacking key players on social media and in the witness box, and his three eldest children have also been burned to death.
September, Judge Arthur Engoron dealt a big blow, ruled that Trump repeatedly committed fraud by inflating the value of his real estate properties, including the former reality star’s Trump Tower apartment. Engoron ruled that Trump’s New York business certificate must be revoked, a punishment Engoron, a 2024 Republican presidential front-runner, called a “corporate death penalty.”Then the Court of Appeals Place your business certificate order on hold.
The judge’s initial ruling stunned onlookers with suggestions that some of Trump’s companies would have to be dissolved if the ruling survives appeal.
Staring down the corporate gallows
Celia Bigones, who runs the Entrepreneurship Law Clinic at Cornell University Law School, told USA TODAY, “The intended effect of this order is that any entity owned or controlled by Donald Trump will not be allowed to operate in New York state. I believe that means it will no longer be used.”
Staring down the corporate gallows, President Trump has mounted an extensive defense in an ongoing trial that is currently examining his own charges., His two oldest sons and two former executives were implicated in insurance fraud and falsifying business records. Unlike the judge’s previous fraud finding, the remaining claims involve questions about the defendant’s intent.
“His criminal trial is important, but whether he is effectively put out of business should be of great importance to Mr. Trump and his family,” said Kofi Modica, a lawyer with appellate, insurance and real estate law firms. Paul Golden, a litigation specialist, says: estate litigation.
“This is going to have a serious impact on everything, including brands,” Golden said.
A Trump campaign spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment.
‘Death knell’ for Trump doing business in New York
James, the state attorney general, wants to go further than Engoron has ever wanted. She ordered a judge to ban President Trump and the Trump Organization from purchasing commercial real estate in New York or taking loans from New York banks for five years, and to ban President Trump and his two eldest sons, Don Jr. and is calling for Eric to be permanently barred from running for office or serving. As a director of a New York company.
Taken together, these penalties “effectively spell the end for Mr. Trump from doing business in New York,” Bigones said.
Brian Quinn, a Boston University School of Law professor who studies corporate law, said James’ efforts to cut Trump off from the state’s banks are particularly problematic given New York City’s role as a global financial capital. He said it could have a big impact.
“This is a financial hub, and the problem for them is that they can’t get loans from banks that are registered in New York,” Quinn said.
Could be a hit outside of New York
The trial in Engoron’s courtroom is ostensibly a New York affair. But experts said a negative ruling in Manhattan could weigh on Trump far beyond state lines.
If Engoron’s fraud ruling survives appeal, it could make it even more difficult for Mr. Trump, whose name adorns buildings and golf courses in India, the Philippines, Scotland and Dubai, to do business overseas.
For overseas projects, “part of the licensing requirements is to ensure that the foreigners who come here are good people, not bad people, and that even if they are found to be bad people by a U.S. court, they cannot do business internationally. It doesn’t help your ability to do it,” Quinn said.
Quinn added that the incident could also negatively impact Trump’s ability to obtain favorable loans outside of New York, as loan agreements typically go through banks’ risk committees. If the committee were to say, “Oh, Donald Trump was found responsible for the fraud,” it would make it harder to get loans, or harder to get loans at good prices, he said. To tell.
Then there’s the question of how a court loss would affect Trump’s precious brand. That’s why President Trump’s attacks on James and Engoron on social media and even from the witness stand may be part of a broader strategy.
Gregory Lewis, a professor at the City University of New York School of Law who specializes in corporate law, said, “The greatness of this testimony has led President Trump to believe that Judge Engoron’s ruling is persuasive, In turn, this would undermine its effectiveness.”
Loss and cash shortage? “Everything he loves has to be sold.”
Former President James and his two eldest sons, as well as former Trump executives and several corporate entities, are facing charges that James’s office estimates amount to $250 million in ill-gotten gains. there is a possibility.
“If he didn’t have the cash, he would have to sell assets and that would be a problem,” Quinn said. “Everything he loves must be sold.”
In his testimony in November, Mr. Trump had no doubt that Mr. Engoron had hit a sore spot. “He called me a fraud and he didn’t know anything about me!” Trump shouted.
And the trial is not over yet.
“Money and business acumen have been central to Donald Trump’s self-conception from the moment he became a public figure, falsely assuming he was already a real estate mogul,” D’Antonio said. “Courts now have real documents and knowledgeable witnesses, so no one should just take a former president’s word for it.”