End Game: Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg Granted Immunity By Feds

This is one domino that Donald Trump could ill afford to see tipped

Allen Weisselberg, longtime Trump money man and CFO of the Trump Organization, has been granted immunity by federal prosecutors.

According to the Wall Street Journal, his immunity came in exchange for “providing information about Michael Cohen in the criminal investigation into hush-money payments for two women during the 2016 presidential campaign”.

This comes a day after the New York Times reported that the Manhattan district attorney’s office is pondering whether to pursue criminal charges against the Trump Organization and two senior officials in connection with Cohen’s payments to Stormy Daniels. Any state investigation would reportedly revolve around improper accounting when it comes to Trump’s reimbursement of $130,000 to Cohen.

“The Trump Organization recorded the reimbursement as a legal expense but Cohen said on Tuesday that he paid Ms. Clifford, better known as Stormy Daniels, to buy her silence during the 2016 campaign”, the Times writes, adding that prosecutors “have said the reimbursement payments were for sham legal invoices in connection with a nonexistent retainer agreement.”

Critically, Trump would not be able to pardon persons or entities charged in a state case.

That news came amid reports that David Pecker, AMI chairman, has also scored an immunity deal with prosecutors. He’s also a witness in the investigation into payments to women who allege affairs with the President. Here’s Vanity Fair:

And now Trump’s most powerful media ally next to Fox News has broken with him. According to two sources briefed on the Cohen investigation, prosecutors granted immunity to David Pecker, chairman of The National Enquirer publisher, American Media Inc., and A.M.I.’s chief content officer, Dylan Howard, so they would describe Trump’s involvement in Cohen’s payments to porn star Stormy Daniels  and  Playboy  Playmate Karen McDougal during the 2016 campaign. The Wall Street Journal   first  reported Pecker’s cooperation on Wednesday night. (Pecker and Howard did not respond to multiple requests for comment. A spokesperson for the Southern District of New York declined to comment.) Pecker’s apparent decision to corroborate Cohen’s account, and implicate Trump in a federal crime, is another vivid example of how isolated Trump is becoming as the walls close in and his former friends look for ways out.

Late last month, news broke that Weisselberg had been subpoenaed to testify before a federal grand jury as part of the Cohen criminal probe.

Allen was mentioned twice in the secret recording of the conversation Cohen had with Trump regarding payments to Karen McDougal, the Playboy model who said she had an affair with then-candidate Trump. That recording was made public last month on CNN.

Here are the references to Weisselberg: 

I’ve spoken to Allen about how to set the whole thing up. I spoke to Allen about it, when it comes time for the financing.

Weisselberg is considered a witness in the Cohen case and as the Wall Street Journal (who broke the story) noted at the time, “it’s unclear if he’s already testified, or what prosecutors want to ask him.”

As our friends over at Wonkette detailed in July, Weisselberg’s 2017 deposition (part of a cache of documents posted by New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood in connection with the Trump Foundation lawsuit) was pretty entertaining. Let’s review (via Wonkette):

New York requires the board of every non-profit meet once a year. Which the Trump Foundation failed to do, but don’t blame Mr. Weisselberg, since he never even knew he was on the board. He just signed the tax return without looking at it, like CPAs always do LOL.

And who asked him to grab the Foundation checkbook and get on a plane bound for Iowa in January 2016 so Trump could pose with those gigantic prop checks? Mr. Weisselberg just can’t recall!


Was it Corey Lewandowski, Trump’s campaign manager? MAAAAAAYBE!


But even if it was, Corey was moonlighting as a charitable fundraiser, and asking him to bring the Foundation’s checkbook to a campaign event had nothing at all to do with the campaign.


And how did it come about that Jeff Mooney, who worked for Mr. Weisselberg at the Trump Organization, got dispatched to set up a fundraising website? Mr. Weisselberg has no idea! He just knew there was some independent contractor fella named maybe “Brad Pascal” working with Mooney to set it up.



Donald Trump’s top deputy for the past forty years is saying that he didn’t know who Brad Parscale was in October of 2017? He went out of his way to say under oath to New York state investigators that he passed this project off to some independent contractor whose name he can’t even remember?

Does Friday’s news have to bode ill for Trump? In a word: yes.

Because as everyone on the planet who has ever known the President suggested last month, Weisselberg actually knows where the proverbial bodies are buried, unlike Cohen who, by comparison anyway, was just a “low-level” guy (à la George Papadopoulos).

The walls are clearly closing in and Trump is increasingly isolated. All of this with Mueller still probing obstruction.

Just to be absolutely clear, Weisselberg would have detailed information on any and all transactions conducted under the Trump Organization name. God only knows what he’s said or what he’s prepared to say, but suffice to say having him as a cooperating witness is just about the worst news imaginable for this President.

“Cohen knew about the payoffs related to women and certain details,” The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman wrote on Friday, before ominously stating the obvious:

Weisselberg knows all the rest.

Get the popcorn for the tweets.

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