Former President and likely 2024 GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump is still trudging his way through the suit brought against him in New York City over the claim that he defrauded banks by overstating his net worth when the Trump Organization was taking out loans. Former President Trump has maintained his innocence.
On Tuesday, AG James’ suit received something of a blow from a Deutsche Bank AG executive who told the court that it is not overly unusual for loan clients to give a somewhat different estimate of their net worth than the bank believes is true, with clients usually giving an inflated estimate, so the bank does its own due diligence in investigating net worth and determining eligibility for loans.
That executive is David Williams, an executive at Deutsche involve in at least one of the three loans that Deutsche Bank made to Trump. According to Williams’ court testimony, it is “atypical, but not entirely unusual” for the bank to both cut the client’s estimated net worth and approve a loan despite the cut, as was the case with a loan it made to Trump.
That cut came over 2011 to 2012, when Deutsche Bank slashed its estimate of his net worth from $.2 billion to $2.3 billion when evaluating loan requests. Despite the cut to his estimated net worth, internal documents show that Deutsche expected to generate profits based on Trump’s past history and so it went ahead and made the loans.
Describing the internal bank process for evaluating client net worth, Mr. Williams told the court, “As part of our due diligence, we subject a client’s asset value to adjustments. It’s part of our underwriting process we apply it to every client regardless of what’s reported.”
Similarly, another bank executive testified that the bank considered its business relationship with Trump a beneficial, profitable one and so wanted to continue that relationship with the then-businessman, TV personality, and real estate mogul. That would seem to run against AG Letitia James’ civil fraud case against Trump, as it would indicate that no one was harmed by the estimate he gave the bank.
In fact, this case is the first ever brought in New York for borrower fraud in which no one is claiming actual harm. Despite that lack of any claim of harm, the state of New York is seeking a $250 million fine against Trump over the inflated estimate and is demanding he surrender control of the Trump Organization’s assets.
In a post on Truth Social about the bank situation, Trump said, “Business Insider: Deutsche Bank executives practically swooned over Donald Trump’s real estate fortune, according to internal documents made public by the defense in his New York civil fraud trial. Trump was seen as a wealthy, fiscally-responsible “whale” who could open doors to his own billions and those of his “network” of fellow moguls, the documents revealed.”
In another recent post on Truth Social about the bias he perceives in the court, namely regarding Judge Engoron, Trump said, “Judge Engoron’s Wife deleted her account yesterday, because what she said, in any other Court in the Nation, would call for an immediate Mistrial with sanctions against the Judge and the Attorney General. We demand to see her account before it was deleted, and all other Family Members likewise. Judge Engoron is a Trump Hater and Puppet for Letitia James, all wrapped up in one!”
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