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Trump fined $354m by New York for bank deception


Donald Trump has been ordered by a court to pay around $355 million to New York State for providing false information about the worth of his real estate assets.

Judge Arthur Engoron prohibited him from acting as a corporate director or obtaining loans from state banks for three years.

The New York real estate magnate avoided the dissolution of several of his firms, possibly leading to bankruptcy.

Mr Trump said from his Florida residence that he intends to challenge the decision.

The former president said from Mar-a-Lago that a New York state court had ordered him to pay a $355 million fine for creating an exceptional corporation, which he referred to as a political witch hunt.

"It is a profoundly sorrowful day for the nation.

Judge Engoron used past misconduct claims to explain the substantial penalties he ordered the defendants to pay, stating that they were likely to persist in their fraudulent behaviour without severe consequences.

He mentioned the Trump organisation's conviction in a criminal tax fraud case in 2022 when a jury determined that the company had provided undisclosed bonuses to its senior executives for over ten years.

Judge Engoron described their total absence of sorrow and remorse as approaching pathological in a 92-page verdict that was at times harsh.

He further said that the scams discovered here are glaringly evident and deeply disturbs the moral sense.

However, Mr Trump's economic empire avoided one of the worst possible outcomes - the revocation of its company licences, sometimes called the corporate death sentence.

The judge mandated two levels of supervision: an autonomous monitor to provide reports to the court for a maximum of three years and a distinct compliance director to be appointed.

The court has ordered Mr Trump to pay interest on the earnings obtained via fraudulent means, known as "prejudgment interest," potentially increasing the total penalty amount to almost $450 million.


Mr Trump has been ordered to pay a certain amount, and his two adult sons and co-defendants, Donald Jr and Eric must pay $4 million each. They are prohibited from doing business in New York for two years, while another co-defendant, Allen Weisselberg, the former chief financial officer of the Trump Organisation, has been instructed to pay $1 million.

Mr. Trump, his firm, and its associates are prohibited from seeking loans in New York for three years.

Both of Mr Trump's sons criticised the sentence on social media, with Donald Jr. alleging that the judgement was politically biased and Eric referring to the judge as "cruel".

New York Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat, accused all four defendants and the broader Trump Organisation of significantly exaggerating property valuations and providing false information on financial records to get substantial loans at advantageous interest rates in her civil action. She requested a penalty of $370 million.

She said on Friday that there must be uniform laws for all individuals in the nation, including previous presidents.

She said at a press conference that although Donald Trump may have written "The Art of the Deal," he excelled at stealing.

In September, Judge Engoron determined that Mr Trump was responsible for commercial fraud, concluding that he had overstated his worth by hundreds of millions of dollars.

The court discovered that Mr Trump's financial documents inaccurately stated that his Trump Tower penthouse was almost three times larger than its actual size.

The 43-day trial late last year had evidence from 40 witnesses and primarily focused on establishing sanctions against Mr Trump.

Judge Ergoron's opinion thoroughly explains his decision, often delving into intricate financial and accounting procedures while directly analysing the evidence given by experts and witnesses.

The defendants provided accountants with deliberately inaccurate financial information to get larger loans at reduced interest rates, creating deceitful financial statements.

During the trial, when faced with the statements, the defendants' facts and expert witnesses outright rejected reality, and the defendants refused to take responsibility.

Legal experts informed that Judge Engoron likely created a comprehensive record in anticipation of Mr Trump filing an appeal.


Mr. Trump consistently denied any misconduct throughout the trial. During closing arguments in January, Mr. Trump proclaimed his innocence and referred to the case as a "fraud against him" in a six-minute address.


The ex-president consistently said that he settled his debts with his creditors, indicating the absence of any illegal activity.


Judge Engoron's verdict recognised that no banks suffered harm, but he cautioned that future lenders who receive false statements may not be as fortunate.


In addition to the $83.3 million owed to writer E Jean Carroll in a separate defamation action, Mr Trump now faces an additional penalty. Although the sum is substantial, it is unlikely to financially ruin a guy with an estimated net worth of $2.6 billion.

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