Senior Trump Organisation official won’t be charged in fraud case, his lawyer says

If subpoenaed, Michael Calamari will cooperate with law enforcement, lawyer says

Maroosha Muzaffar
Thursday 25 November 2021 07:20
Comments
<p>Michael Calamari once served as Donald Trump’s bodyguard </p>

Michael Calamari once served as Donald Trump’s bodyguard

Michael Calamari, the Chief Operating Officer of Trump Organisation, will not be charged by the Manhattan district attorney in a tax fraud case, his lawyer has confirmed.

Mr Calamari, who once served as former US president Donald Trump’s bodyguard, was being investigated by New York prosecutors for allegedly receiving tax-free fringe benefits from the Trump Organisation. Mr Trump and his company employees were accused of illegally avoiding paying taxes on such perks.

“I have been informed that there is no present intention to bring charges against Mr Calamari,” his lawyer Nicholas Gravante said. “We believe that is a fair and just decision. What the future holds in terms of the district attorney’s continuing investigation is anyone’s guess.”

He added: “Mr Calamari is pleased that the District Attorney’s office has indicated that it has no present intention to bring charges against him. That is a fair and appropriate decision. He has committed no crimes and led an exemplary life.”

The lawyer added that Mr Calamari would cooperate with law enforcement officials if he’s subpoenaed. He said: “If subpoenaed to testify, he will appear and testify truthfully.”

In July, the Trump Organisation and its longtime chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg were charged with executing a “sweeping and audacious” tax fraud scheme over the course of 15 years.

Among the 15 felony counts were that Mr Weisselberg was provided with $1.7m in untaxed benefits, such as apartment rent, school tuition, and car payments. Both the Trump Organisation and Mr Weisselberg have pleaded not guilty to all charges, and a trial is expected to begin in September 2022.

An indictment that was unsealed in July stated that “the beneficiaries of the scheme received substantial portions of their income through indirect and disguised means, with compensation that was unreported or misreported by the Trump Corporation and Trump Payroll Corp”.

Trump Organisation attorneys had called the indictment “politically motivated”.

Earlier this month, the Manhattan district attorney had convened a grand jury to weigh possible new charges in a case related to the Trump Organisation.

Meanwhile, Mr Vance’s prosecutors on Wednesday issued new subpoenas for records on Mr Trump’s hotels, golf clubs and office buildings, The New York Times reported. Prosecutors also interviewed a banker employed by the Deutsche Bank, Mr Trump’s top lender, it said.

Additional reporting by agencies

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in