Adding to Trump’s woes, grand jury indicts his core business

Adding to Trump’s woes, grand jury indicts his core business

It was in late May when we learned that prosecutors in New York had convened a grand jury to consider evidence against Donald Trump’s core business, the Trump Organization, raising the possibility of a criminal indictment against the former president’s private-sector operation.

It’s no longer just a possibility.

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office and the New York Attorney General’s Office have obtained indictments against the Trump Organization and its chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, two people familiar with the matter told NBC News on Wednesday. The charges, handed up by a New York grand jury, are expected to be unsealed in court Thursday afternoon in Manhattan, one Trump representative told NBC News.

By some accounts, Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg surrendered to the district attorney’s office earlier this morning, and he’ll be arraigned later today.

As important as the relevant details are, it’s worth pausing to appreciate the bigger picture. Trump’s “university” was exposed by law enforcement as a fraudulent operation. His 2016 political operation saw many of its top leaders convicted of felonies. His inaugural committee faced criminal probe. His charity was also exposed as a fraudulent operation. He’s currently facing criminal investigations in two states.

And now, Trump’s core business has been indicted, too.

As for the precise nature of the criminal charges against the Trump Organization, the indictments, for now, remain sealed. They will reportedly be unsealed in about six hours. That said, NBC News reported overnight that the charges “stem from a scheme to pay compensation to Weisselberg and possibly others ‘off the books’ by the Trump Organization.”

In other words, at issue are alleged tax felonies committed by the former president’s business. These are not federal charges, but rather, state charges under New York law.

As for Trump himself, the latest reporting suggests it’s unlikely the former president himself will be indicted today, though as Rachel explained on last night’s show, the door remains open to charges against Trump in a subsequent indictment, known in legal circles as a superseding indictment.

Watch this space.