News broke last week that prosecutors in Manhattan, New York, would soon begin to hand down criminal indictments stemming from a lengthy investigation into former President Donald Trump.
According to Trump attorney Ronald Fischetti, however, the office of District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. affirmed that the indictments will be aimed at the Trump Organization and some of its top executives — but not the former president.
“It’s crazy that that’s all they had”
The lawyer cited assurances he received during a virtual meeting with prosecutors on Thursday in characterizing Trump as safe from criminal charges.
Vance’s office has scrutinized Trump and his business ties since at least 2018 with a probe that went all the way to the Supreme Court to obtain his personal and business tax records.
Of apparent interest to the district attorney were purportedly manipulated asset values and “hush money” payments to women who claimed to have had a sexual relationship with Trump.
More recently, the focus has narrowed in on top Trump Organization executives accused of improperly reporting certain fringe benefits on their taxes. Fischetti said he has specifically asked whether the indictments would cover anything else.
“They said, ‘No,'” the attorney revealed. “It’s crazy that that’s all they had.”
“This is so small”
The prosecutors who participated in the recent meeting reportedly confirmed that Trump is not facing impending criminal charges.
“They just said, ‘When this indictment comes down, he won’t be charged. Our investigation is ongoing,'” Fischetti explained. “It’s like the Shakespeare play Much Ado About Nothing. This is so small that I can’t believe I’m going to have to try a case like this.”
Initial indicators suggested that charges could be announced as soon as this week, and the Washington Post has since reported that prosecutors gave Trump Organization lawyers until Monday to convince them not to proceed with the planned indictments.
As for which top executives are said to be entangled in the criminal probe, Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg’s name is at the top of the list.
Believed to be among the biggest beneficiaries of fringe benefits, Weisselberg is thought to be under pressure from prosecutors to provide information about Trump. Thus far, it appears that he has refused to cooperate.