8:10 pm ET, November 2, 2023
Here are key takeaways from the testimony of Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr. in the New York fraud case
From CNN’s Jeremy Herb, Lauren Del Valle and Cara Scannell
The New York attorney general’s office on Thursday pressed Donald Trump’s two-year-old sons over their knowledge of and involvement in the former president’s financial statements. Significant and tense days of Fraud Investigation.
Thursday’s repeated appearances from Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump — both of whom helped run the Trump Organization while their father was in the White House — come ahead of the former president’s own testimony on Monday.
Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump are co-defendants in the suit, along with their father, Trump Ark. And there are many corporate executives.
Eric Trump confronted with emails showing his work related to Trump’s finances: The cross-examination of Assistant Attorney General Andrew Amer added to the tension, as Eric Trump pressed him to come clean about his father’s use of financial statements to support real estate transactions.
Eric Trump admitted to providing information to former Trump Organization comptroller Jeff McCone, who is a co-defendant in the investigation. But he sought to distinguish between specific financial statements — his father’s personal financial statements at the center of the civil case — and general financial records for the company.
The distinction is relevant because Donald Trump’s financial statements are documents the attorney general has pointed to as evidence that he inflated the values of his assets to boost his net worth — and to get favorable loan terms.
An expert witness for the attorney general testified Wednesday that the Trump Organization saved $168 million thanks to loan rates obtained with the help of fraudulent information.
Donald Trump Jr. said he relies on accountants: Donald Trump Jr. has repeatedly said he relies on his accountants and is not involved in preparing his father’s financial statements.
He testified that he did not prepare the financial statements, and that when he certified them as a trustee, he relied on the Trump Organization’s accounting and legal teams.
After Faherty asked what steps the Trump Organization took once the attorney general’s investigation began in 2019, the attorney general’s office and Trump’s attorneys had a lengthy back-and-forth about the attorney-client privilege.
Some internal policies and procedures have been “strengthened” since the investigation began, Trump Jr. said. One of those changes, he said, is hiring a chief financial officer who is a certified public accountant.