Eric Trump claimed during testimony at a Manhattan fraud trial Thursday that he wasn’t involved with his dad’s financial statements — echoing his brother Donald Trump Jr.’s testimony – but was more prickly on the stand than his elder sibling.The two Trump brothers arrived at Manhattan Supreme Court on Thursday morning wearing nearly identical clothing, including dark navy blue suits, light blue ties, brown shoes, slicked-back coifs and neatly groomed facial hair.Don Jr., 45, waved to the press cameras as the entourage-flanked duo walked inside.During Eric’s testimony — which was noticeably more tense than Don Jr.’s — state attorney Andrew Amer repeatedly pressed the 39-year-old on whether he was involved in compiling the former president’s statements of financial condition, which are at the center of the fraud case.The icy afternoon was capped by Justice Arthur Engoron getting into a spat with Trump’s lawyer Christopher Kise after the conclusion of testimony when the judge suggested the attorney might be misogynistic for referring to his female law clerk repeatedly. The judge also threatened to expand his gag order against Donald Trump to include the lawyers.New York Attorney General Letitia James claims in her $250 million lawsuit — against the 45th president, Eric, Don Jr. and the family’s real estate company — that from 2011 to 2021 Trump, 77, lied on the statements, inflating his assets by billions a year to get better terms on loan and insurance.“I never had anything to do with the statement of financial condition,” said Eric, an executive vice president at Trump Organization. “People ask me questions all the time but I never worked on the statement of financial condition.”When asked about one of these statements from 2012, Eric responded: “I was 26 years old at the time, I don’t recall what I knew at the time, but I never worked on it and didn’t know anything about it until this case came into fruition.”He appeared visibly annoyed and clashed with Amer throughout the questioning, raising his voice at one point, with the lawyer snapping back at him at another.Amer spent a good deal of time confronting Eric with emails and other pieces of evidence suggesting that Eric was aware of his father’s statements of financial condition.“We’re a major organization, a massive real estate organization, [and] of course I understand we have financial statements, absolutely,” Eric loudly told Amer right before a lunch break.“I had no involvement, nor never worked on my father’s statement of financial condition.”The real estate scion delivered a measured response after the lunch break saying there was a difference between documents used for financials versus documents used in the annual statements of financial condition.Amer responded by asking if Eric had spoken to anyone during the break — apparently implying that he’d been coached.“No,” Eric responded.Amer also attempted to poke holes in Eric’s credibility by highlighting inconsistencies between his statements Thursday and ones he made previously during his March 7, 2023 deposition — clips of which were played in court.The prosecutor also snapped, “Are you done?” to Eric after he told the lawyer he was conflating valuation numbers for the Trump golf club in Westchester.Engoron intervened to smooth things over telling Eric that Amer wasn’t trying to insult the witness.“He meant that seriously, it wasn’t a dig,” the judge said.Amer also showed Eric emails he exchanged with former Trump Org. Controller Jeffrey McConney from 2013 in which McConney told Eric he was working on a statement of financial condition and asked Eric for the value of Trump Westchester property Seven Springs.“Having reviewed the emails, will you now concede you were very familiar with your father’s statement of financial condition at least since 2013?” Amer asked. “No,” Eric responded.Amer also pressed Eric on whether he knew that McConney was going to use the information for his dad’s statement of financial condition to which Eric was forced to concede.“Yes, it appears that way, from the emails,” he said.After Eric’s testimony ended for the day, Kise raised the issue of Engoron’s law clerk saying: “I truly feel I am fighting two adversaries.”“I feel your position is often what is given to you in notes,” Kise said of the repeated messages the clerk has passed to the judge throughout the trial. “You are given notes, there is a nod of the head and those decisions are made.”Engoron became so angry by the end of the back and forth that he banged his fist on the bench and yelled so loudly that the speaker system became distorted.“Confidential communications from my clerk? You don’t have any right to see it or question it,” the judge bellowed. Meanwhile, during Don. Jr.’s roughly three hours of testimony spread over Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning, the mood as much lighter as he cracked multiple jokes, prompting courtroom laughter and deflected questions of his involvement in the statements of financial condition by saying his accountants handled it.But Don Jr. also maintained that he wasn’t involved in drafting the documents, saying, “The accountants worked on it, that’s what we pay them for.”Donald Trump’s testimony is slated for Monday and his eldest daughter Ivanka’s is scheduled for Wednesday.
03 Kasım 2023 - 02:35
Eric Trump, like Don Jr., denies involvement in dad Donald’s financial statements that are key at fraud trial
The two Trump brothers arrived at Manhattan Supreme Court on Thursday morning wearing nearly identical clothing, including dark navy blue suits, light blue ties, brown shoes, slicked-back coifs and…
03 Kasım 2023 - 02:35