Trump Accuses Manhattan DA Of ‘Prosecutorial Misconduct’ While Seeming To Admit Guilt
Former President Donald Trump claimed Manhattan prosecutors were engaging in “prosecutorial misconduct” at a rally on Saturday night by indicting his company.
Trump criticized the indictment of his namesake company and its chief financial officer for tax fraud. But he also appeared to admit to being involved in shady tax schemes. He even went so far as to question whether such schemes qualified as legitimate crimes.
“They go after good, hard-working people for not paying taxes on a company car,” the business mogul said at his rally in Sarasota, Fla. “You didn’t pay tax on the car or a company apartment. You used an apartment because you need an apartment because you have to travel too far where your house is. You didn’t pay tax. Or education for your grandchildren. I don’t even know. Do you have to? Does anybody know the answer to that stuff?”
The Manhattan District Attorney’s office alleged that the Trump Organization and CFO Allen Weisselberg orchestrated a 15-year tax evasion scheme. Weisselberg reportedly managed to avoid paying taxes on $1.7 million in fringe benefits by hiding these benefits from the federal government. The Trump Organization and Weisselberg have both pleaded not guilty.
Trump himself was not charged in the case, but he still criticized the possible political motivations behind the investigation. “For murder and for selling massive amounts of the worst drugs in the world that kill people left and right, that’s ok,” he said. “Think of it, think of how unfair it is. Never before has New York City and their prosecutors or perhaps any prosecutors criminally charged a company or a person for fringe benefits. Fringe benefits. Murders, okay. Human trafficking, no problem — but fringe benefits, you can’t do that.”
Trump added that he is being targeted by the “radical left” who did not “get him” during the Mueller investigation.
The former president also claimed that prosecutors only go after him and other Republicans. “Every abuse and attack they throw my way, it’s only because I have been fighting for you against the corrupt establishment,” he said. “That’s all it is.”
Carey Dunne, a prosecutor working for Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. (D), responded with the following statement: “There is no clearer example of a company that should be held to criminal account.”