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In 2022, New York Attorney General Letitia James filed a lawsuit alleging that former President Donald Trump and the Trump Organization "created more than 200 false and misleading valuations of assets" to defraud financial institutions. Trump has denied wrongdoing.
In September, a New York Supreme Court judge ruled Trump had inflated his Mar-a-Lago estate’s value.
Regardless of Mar-a-Lago’s exact value, the question of whether Trump assets’ values were inflated is central to the New York fraud case.
Donald Trump and daughter Ivanka Trump took the witness stand to testify in New York’s fraud trial against the former president and his business.
As he campaigns to reclaim the White House in 2024, Trump has been active on his social media platform Truth Social throughout the trial, and a post he made before Ivanka’s Nov. 8 testimony caught some social media users’ attention.
"It all makes sense now," said a woman in a video posted Nov. 8. The woman repeatedly referred to a screenshot of Donald Trump’s Nov. 8 Truth Social post, which said that Ivanka would be testifying. "This whole court case — now that it’s all coming together, it has nothing to do with his home in Mar-a-Lago. Nothing."
The woman claimed she had "decoded" parts of the former president’s Truth Social post and determined that the case wasn’t about the value of Trump’s assets at all.
"Letitia Peekaboo James, she decodes to this — Are you ready for this? — Trump prophecy," she said, without explaining how she drew "decoding" conclusions.
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In 2022, New York Attorney General Letitia James filed a lawsuit, alleging that Trump and the Trump Organization "created more than 200 false and misleading valuations of assets" to defraud financial institutions. The lawsuit alleges that from 2011 to 2021, Trump and his businesses inflated assets by billions of dollars to save hundreds of millions of dollars on loans and insurance.
Trump has denied wrongdoing. The civil fraud trial continued as of Nov. 10.
Among the properties with disputed valuations is Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida.
On Sept. 26, New York Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron ruled that from 2011 to 2021, the Palm Beach County property appraiser determined Mar-a-Lago’s value was "between $18 million and $27.6 million." But financial records show that Trump valued Mar-a-Lago from $426 million to $612 million, "an overvaluation of at least 2,300%," Engoron wrote in his court order, using italicization.
The county appraiser is a government office that assesses property values for tax purposes only, and experts say a county appraiser’s valuation is often lower than what a property could be sold for on the open market. Palm Beach real estate experts told media outlets that $18 million was a very low valuation.
When Engoron ruled Sept. 26 that Trump and his company were liable for fraud, he relied on more than discrepancies with Mar-a-Lago’s valuation. The judge also chastised Trump for claiming his Manhattan apartment was nearly three times its actual size and inflating its valuation, for example.
Regardless of Mar-a-Lago’s exact value, the question of whether Trump assets’ values were inflated remains central to the New York fraud case.
A Facebook post claimed that New York’s fraud case against Trump "has nothing to do with his home in Mar-a-Lago."
The case against Trump clearly lays out that overvaluation of properties — including Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate — is a key component to the fraud trial.
We rate this claim False.
The New York Times, 3 Things We Learned From Ivanka Trump’s Trial Testimony, Nov. 9, 2023
NBC News, Trump fraud trial recap: Former president testifies in N.Y. legal case, Nov. 6, 2023
PolitiFact, New York officials didn’t value Mar-a-Lago at $18 million. A Palm Beach property appraiser did, Oct. 6, 2023
Sun Sentinel, New York judge’s ruling about Mar-a-Lago value rattles Palm Beach luxury real estate market, Sept. 30, 2023
The Messenger, Palm Beach Real Estate Insiders Scorch ‘Totally Stupid’ $18M Appraisal of Mar-a-Lago, Sept. 27, 2023
CNN, Real estate insiders question how Trump fraud judge valued Mar-a-Lago, Oct. 3, 2020
Reuters, Donald Trump’s civil fraud trial: What’s at stake? Oct. 2, 2023
The New York Times, 5 Things We Learned During Trump’s Trial Testimony, Nov. 7, 2023
The Associated Press, Donald Trump is going back to court. Here’s what he’s missed since his last visit to NYC fraud trial, Oct. 16, 2023
Reuters, Trump's daughter worried he was not wealthy enough, emails in NY fraud trial show, Nov. 8, 2023
The New York Times, Judge Rules Trump Committed Fraud, Stripping Control of Key Properties, Sept. 26, 2023
Politico, Trump fraudulently inflated his net worth by up to $2.2 billion, New York judge rules, Sept. 26, 2023
The Associated Press, Judge rules Donald Trump defrauded banks and insurers while building real estate empire, Sept. 26, 2023
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