January 12, 2023
Former Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg will trade the high life for Rikers Island—New York City’s municipal jail—following his sentencing on Tuesday, January 10, for dodging taxes on US$1.7 million in company perks, in a case a Manhattan judge said was “driven purely by greed,” reports the New York Post.
Weisselberg, 75—who pleaded guilty to tax fraud charges in August and testified against the Trump Organization at its trial—is expected to serve just 100 days of the five-month prison term handed down in Manhattan Supreme Court.
The former executive, dressed casually in an olive green North Face fleece over a white T-shirt, blue jeans, and white sneakers, was hauled away in handcuffs immediately after learning his fate.
He is set to be housed in the notorious jail complex’s North Infirmary Command, which has been home to inmates like the rappers Tupac Shakur and Lil Wayne, as well as disgraced former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, The Post had learned.
The unit historically has been used to house high-profile or especially notorious inmates, as well as inmates with disabilities. Weisselberg could be released in three months with good behavior and would then serve five years of probation.
Attorneys for Weisselberg—who had on a surgical mask during the hearing and appeared to have gotten a haircut prior to being sent to the can—requested a more lenient sentence.
But Judge Juan Manuel Merchan rejected the request, saying that Weisselberg’s misdeeds were “driven purely by greed, pure and simple.”
“At a time when so many Americans work so hard in the hopes of they’ll one day benefit from Social Security, your client found a way to give his wife a US$6,000 payroll payment so that she could contribute to Social Security so that she could one day receive the benefits to which she was not entitled,” Merchan chided defense lawyer Nicholas Gravante.
Gravante had argued that Weisselberg’s advanced age and public shaming should be taken into account by his client’s request for leniency.
Each month makes a big difference when you’re 75 years old,” Gravante said. “He has already been punished tremendously by the disgrace he has brought not only on himself but on his wife, on his two sons and on his four grandchildren.”
Weisselberg became emotional when it was his turn to address the court, his voice cracking as he spoke. “I think the words expressed by Mr. Gravante expressed my thoughts and my feelings. It has been difficult,” Weisselberg said, as he tried in vain to sway Merchan into easing up on his punishment.
Research contact: @nypost