Former President Donald Trump has long touted his business accomplishments, but it now appears that in addition to losing re-election in 2020, he could lose his New York business empire. This week, as part of his ruling in the civil case New York Attorney General Attorney Letitia James brought against Trump, New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron ordered that the business certificates for his New York companies be rescinded after he found that the former president and his company had “repeatedly” violated state fraud laws.
Engoron found that the former president and his company deceived banks, insurers, and others by massively overvaluing his assets as well as exaggerating his net worth on paperwork that was used in numerous deals and to secure loans.
“That is a fantasy world, not the real world,” Engoron wrote, and the judge ordered that some of Trump’s licenses be canceled as a punishment. That could make it difficult – even impossible – for the Trump Organization to do business in New York.
“Without a corporate charter, you can’t operate as a corporation. You can’t get loans, you can’t apply for a government contract,” financial crimes prosecutor Diana Florence told Insider. “It’s comparable to once a person dies. A dead person can’t sell property. Only the executor of the estate can do that — or in this case, the receiver.”
That could include Fifth Avenue’s Trump Tower, the landmark where Trump maintained his personal residence for years, filmed episodes of the NBC reality TV series “The Apprentice” and even launched his 2016 presidential campaign. Trump’s other New York properties are potentially affected as well, The Washington Post reported.
It could also include his flagship commercial property at 40 Wall Street in Lower Manhattan to his Westchester Country estate Seven Springs.
Engoron has further said he would consider even larger penalties than James requested, including $250 million in fines, and a prohibition from Trump and his company from obtaining new loans by any bank chartered in New York for five years. In addition, James had called for a ban on the former president, his adult sons Eric and Don Jr., and executives within the organization from operating or owning businesses in the state in the future.
Team Donald Trump Fires Back
Trump’s legal team has maintained that the case is baseless as the banks that issued loans still profited from them and that Trump didn’t default on any of the loans at issue between 2011 and 2021 – and further suggested James’ suit was politically motivated.
“My Civil rights have been violated, and some Appellate Court, whether federal or state, must reverse this horrible, un-American decision,” the former president wrote on his Truth Social platform and added, “A very sad Day for the New York State System of Justice!”
Author Experience and Expertise
A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.