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Ex-Trump Org. CFO in talks to plead guilty to perjury charge tied to civil fraud investigation

<i>Eduardo Munoz/Reuters/File</i><br/>In this August 2022 photo
Eduardo Munoz/Reuters/File
In this August 2022 photo

By Kara Scannell, CNN

(CNN) — The former chief financial officer of the Trump Organization is in talks to potentially plead guilty to a perjury charge related to a civil investigation into the real estate company’s finances, people familiar with the matter said.

Allen Weisselberg, the former CFO, is in negotiations with the Manhattan district attorney’s office, but the talks are in the early stages and a deal has not been finalized, the people said. The potential charges relate to testimony Weisselberg gave in an interview with the New York attorney general’s office and at the related civil fraud trial of former President Donald Trump last year, one of the people said.

The talks could fall apart without a deal being reached.

If Weisselberg does reach a deal to plead guilty, it would be the second plea from Trump’s former longtime lieutenant, who in 2022 pleaded guilty to 15 criminal charges related to tax fraud and served 100 days in New York City’s Rikers Island jail. He testified at the criminal tax fraud trial of two Trump Organization entities, which were convicted and fined.

As part of the current deal under negotiation, the people said, Weisselberg is not cooperating against his former boss and is not expected to be called as a witness in the criminal trial scheduled to start next month.

Trump was indicted on 34 counts of felony counts of falsifying business records as part of a scheme to reimburse his former attorney for making payments to bury allegations of an affair before the 2016 presidential election. Trump has denied the affair and has pleaded not guilty to the charges. A number of Trump associates were called before the grand jury to give testimony, but Weisselberg was not among them.

Weisselberg’s attorney, Seth Rosenberg, could not immediately be reached for comment. A spokesperson for Alvin Bragg, the Manhattan district attorney, declined to comment.

The New York Times first reported that Weisselberg was in talks with prosecutors to resolve the investigation.

The district attorney’s office has pressured Weisselberg for months about potential charges related to insurance fraud and perjury.

It isn’t clear which statements Weisselberg would agree were false testimony. Weisselberg, who is also a defendant in the civil fraud lawsuit, was called as a witness by the New York attorney general’s office and testified at the trial last year. He was grilled over how the Trump Organization’s financial statements were composed and how they derived values for Trump’s properties.

The New York attorney general’s office is seeking more than $370 million in disgorgement from Trump as well as a ban from doing business in the state. A judge is expected to issue his findings this month.

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