Court Battles

Judge orders closer scrutiny of Trump’s assets amid New York fraud trial

NEW YORK — The judge overseeing former President Trump’s fraud trial in New York Thursday issued an order barring Trump or any other defendants in the sweeping case from transferring any assets or creating a new entity to acquire them without disclosure first.

The order, which came via the case’s online docket, was delivered on the fourth day of the trial, which was prompted after Judge Arthur Engoron found Trump liable for fraud, ruling that New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) had proved the crux of her case. As part of that decision, Engoron ordered the selection of an independent monitor of Trump’s businesses.

On Thursday, Engoron said that appointed monitor — former Judge Barbara Jones — must be informed if the defendants intend to move their assets or create a new entity that isn’t a defendant in the case to acquire them.

The order also dictated that Jones must be informed of any application for a new business certificate in any jurisdiction, any anticipated distribution or assignment of rights from Trump’s entities, any modifications to existing contracts and any disclosures to third parties related to the transfer or cancellation of business certificates.

Though the order was not discussed in the courtroom Thursday, it implies that the judge wants a closer eye on the former president’s assets as his fraud trial, which is expected to last through much of this year, is ongoing.

The trial centers on an investigation of Trump’s business conduct in which prosecutors say his company illegally inflated property values and sizes in order to secure business loans and insurance policies on better terms.

Trump sat through the first three days of the trial but is not present in the courtroom Thursday. The 2024 GOP primary front-runner has campaign stops planned over the weekend in Iowa and Monday in New Hampshire.

Tags Arthur Engoron Letitia James