A ruling by New York’s highest court in a fraud case against former American International Group Inc
The New York Court of Appeals ruled on Thursday that state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman could seek to recoup millions of dollars in bonus payments to Greenberg using the legal remedy called disgorgement.
Unlike damages, which are used to compensate victims’ losses, disgorgement requires a defendant to give back gains obtained from unlawful means. The ruling means that Schneiderman can go after $5 million he says Trump personally pocketed from the Trump University real-estate seminar venture.
“It doesn’t help him,” Jeffrey Goldman, Trump’s lawyer in the New York case, said on Monday of the Greenberg ruling. But Goldman said Trump expected to win the case and could also try to limit the amount subject to disgorgement, such as by arguing that most of it was earned outside of New York.
According to the state’s 2013 lawsuit against Trump, filed in state court in Manhattan, Trump University was an unlicensed, illegal operation that bilked students of up to $35,000 each between 2005 and 2011. Two proposed class actions in California make similar allegations.
Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, has repeatedly raised the Trump University litigation on the campaign trail, calling the lawsuits baseless and politically motivated. He has also accused the federal judge overseeing the California lawsuits of being biased against him because of his ethnicity. The judge was born in Indiana to Mexican parents.
In the Greenberg case, the state accused the former CEO of orchestrating sham transactions at AIG and misleading shareholders about the company’s financial health between 2000 and 2005. Schneiderman is asking that Greenberg disgorge some $25 million in bonuses during that period, plus interest.
Greenberg has denied any wrongdoing. His lawyer, David Boies, who represented Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore in the dispute over the 2000 election recount, had argued that disgorgement was not a remedy available to the New York attorney general under either the state’s securities fraud law or another fraud statute. The Court of Appeals rejected Boies’ arguments.
The ability to seek disgorgement may be useful to Schneiderman because the California cases involving Trump University may be resolved before the New York case. One is scheduled for trial on Nov. 28, just a few weeks after the Nov. 8 election.
A settlement or judgment in those cases could undermine Schneiderman’s claim for $40 million in damages because he is suing on behalf of many of the same former Trump University students. But disgorgement claims would not be affected.
(Reporting by Karen Freifeld; Editing by Anthony Lin and Peter Cooney)
Rod Rosenstein secretly crippled the Mueller investigation: report
According to a report from the New York Times, former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had a hand in limiting the scope of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into ties between Donald Trump's 2016 campaign and the Russians by secretly curtailing an FBI counterintelligence probe.
The report from Michael Schmidt of the Times begins by stating, "The Justice Department secretly took steps in 2017 to narrow the investigation into Russian election interference and any links to the Trump campaign, according to former law enforcement officials," before adding, "But law enforcement officials never fully investigated Mr. Trump’s own relationship with Russia, even though some career F.B.I. counterintelligence investigators thought his ties posed such a national security threat that they took the extraordinary step of opening an inquiry into them."
‘Meanest and most disrespectful’ senator: Trump lashes out at Kamala Harris in latest presser
At Tuesday's White House press conference, President Donald Trump spent a considerable portion of the time attacking Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), who was just announced to be former Vice President Joe Biden's running mate.
Harris, complained Trump, was the "meanest and most disrespectful person in the U.S. Senate." He particularly dwelled on her sharp interrogation of Brett Kavanaugh during his Supreme Court hearings.
Trump also added that she "lied" about a number of issues, claimed repeatedly she wants to raise taxes, said she is for "open borders and sanctuary cities ... which is also protecting a large number of criminals," and that she would destroy the Second Amendment.
California bill to establish nation’s second public bank applauded as ‘historic challenge to Wall Street domination’
"If California is serious about addressing racial and income inequities, we must create a banking system that centers people not profits."
In a move advocacy groups celebrated as a "historic challenge to Wall Street domination of municipal finances," a pair of California state lawmakers on Thursday unveiled legislation that would establish the nation's second publicly-owned bank and empower the institution to lend to businesses and local governments fighting to stay afloat amid the Covid-19 pandemic.