The probe into former President Donald Trump’s finances ‘unraveled’ following a disagreement by two prosecutors and Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg.
The two experienced prosecutors, Mark F. Pomerantz and Carey R. Dunne, clarified their approach for reportedly proving that the former president’s financial statements were false.
Time was running out as the grand jury hearing testimony was set to expire in the spring and they needed Bragg to decide whether to press criminal charges, according to The New York Times.
Mr. Bragg and his top assistants, who were disguised and huddled around a conference table on the eighth floor of the district attorney’s office in Lower Manhattan, were skeptical.
They pressed Mr. Pomerantz and Mr. Dunne on whether they could prove Mr. Trump intended to violate the law by inflating the worth of his assets in yearly reports, which was a necessity to prove the case.
According to those familiar with the debate, as the meeting came to a conclusion, Mr. Dunne, irritated, used a lawyerly term that normally alludes to a judge’s vigorous questioning: “Wow, this was a very hot bench.”
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“From what I’m hearing, you’re worried.” The meeting on Jan. 24 triggered a chain of events that halted the investigation into Mr. Trump and forced Mr. Pomerantz and Mr. Dunne to resign late last month.
Mr. Bragg’s predecessor, Cyrus R. Vance Jr., had debated for months before deciding to press through with an indictment of Mr. Trump. Mr. Bragg changed his decision only two months into his employment.
Following the discussion, Bragg stated that he had major issues about establishing Trump’s intent to lie, “a necessity for showing that he unlawfully manipulated his business documents,” and that he also had reservations about a crucial witness, former Trump attorney Michael Cohen.
The two attorneys resigned in February, just 9 days after Trump blasted a lengthy email criticizing Bragg and New York Attorney General Letitia James’ investigations.
“Chuck Schumer’s brother, Robert, is a partner and runs the firm. After many years as the District Attorney, the previous DA, Cy Vance, recently left without being able to charge anything other than a fringe benefits case about which the WSJ Editorial Board commented, saying ‘Manhattan D.A. Cyrus Vance Jr. and New York Attorney General Letitia James subpoenaed millions of documents and years of tax returns, and that’s all they’ve come up with.” the former president said.