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A first step towards a seizure of the property of Donald Trump

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New York State Attorney General Letitia James at a press conference after the ruling ordering Donald Trump to pay US$355 million plus interest.

  • Sophie-Hélène Lebeuf

< p class="text-medium leading-6 text-gray600 light:text-gray600 dark:text-gray400">Speech synthesis, based on artificial intelligence, makes it possible to generate spoken text from written text.

The Attorney General of x27;New York State, Letitia James, has taken a first step towards a possible seizure of property belonging to former US President Donald Trump in the wake of his conviction for a series of financial frauds within the Trump Organization.

Earlier this month, the Attorney General's Office formally notified the Westchester County Clerk of Courts of the decision against the businessman, court records show. of the county which several American media reported on Thursday.

It is in this county that Donald Trump's Seven Springs estate is located as well as x27;one of his private golf clubs.

Formal registration with a county clerk's office is the preliminary step taken by a creditor for possible seizure of property within that territorial division.

< p class="StyledBodyHtmlParagraph-sc-48221190-4 hnvfyV">The fact that Letitia James' team took this step on March 6, three weeks before the deadline by which Donald Trump must comply with the judgment rendered by Judge Arthur Engoron, seems to indicate that she is prepared to act quickly if the real estate tycoon proves unable to comply with the court's decision.

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A month ago, Judge Engoron, of the New York State Court in Manhattan, sentenced the former American president, who aspires to reconquer the White House, to pay 354.9 million of US dollars, plus interest approaching 100 million, for fraudulently overestimating the net value of his assets in order to deceive his creditors.

The judgment was already formally recorded in New York, where several of Donald Trump's flagship properties are located, such as the Trump Tower on 5th Avenue, 40 Wall Street, also called the Trump Building, as well as the Trump International Hotel & Tower.

Trump has until March 25 to comply with the ruling, unless the Supreme Court's Appellate Division of New York State, to which he turned, comes to his aid by postponing the payment deadline.

Theoretically, the Attorney General of the State of New York could therefore begin the legal procedure on Monday to seize Donald Trump's bank accounts and material assets in Manhattan and Westchester, a procedure which involves several stages.

In an interview with the ABC network last month, Ms. James indicated that she intended to initiate the legal mechanism leading to the seizure of Donald Trump's property if he did not have the funds to respect the judgment.

We are prepared to ensure that [the amount provided in] the judgment is paid to New Yorkers, and yes, I'm looking at the 40, Wall Street every day, she said.

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Donald Trump, during his civil trial in New York for tax fraud, January 11, 2024

Failing to pay penalties of around half a billion dollars, Donald Trump, who is appealing his conviction, can obtain a type of loan called an appeal bond, the route he chose , but which he says he is unable to obtain.

This is a payment guarantee provided by one or more surety companies in the event that the defendant loses his appeal and is unable to pay the penalty. In exchange, the latter undertakes to provide the company with guarantees and to pay it a commission which can reach, according to the New York Times, 3% of the amount of the guarantee.

Earlier this week, his lawyers requested a stay of payment in the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of the State of New York to to prevent the State from seizing its property. It is “practically impossible” for their client to provide the required guarantee, they argued in a court document, citing insurmountable difficulties.

On Wednesday, Letitia James countered that if Mr. Trump proves unable to obtain security from a single surety company, then he could try to obtain several for lower amounts from a larger number of companies.

Donald Trump's lawyers dismissed this solution out of hand on Thursday, calling it #x27;illogical, unconstitutional, impractical and unfair, according to ABC News.

According to the New York Times, the former US president's net worth comes mainly from his real estate, a type of asset rarely accepted as collateral by surety companies.

At the end of February, a judge of the court of appeal had already refused to grant the Republican candidate a delay for the implementation of the financial judgment, just as he had rejected his request to lower the bail to 100 million dollars.

Interest will increase by approximately $112,000 per day until the penalties are paid.

These do not correspond to a fine, but to the estimated value of the money earned thanks to the fraud scheme over a period of ten years.

The two eldest sons of Donald Trump, Donald Trump Jr. and Erik Trump, who were also prosecuted, were for their part sentenced to pay a total sum of approximately 4 million each.

With information from CNN and ABC News

  • Sophie-Hélène LebeufFollow

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