The same tax evasion scheme allegedly used by the Trump Organization to secretly funnel money to CFO Allen Weisselberg may have also been used to enrich Donald Trump's children, Rachel Maddow recently suggested.
During a segment of MSNBC's "The Rachel Maddow Show," the host found similarities between the illegal compensation described in the Manhattan District Attorney's indictment of Weisselberg and evidence uncovered by the New York Times' Pulitizer Prize winning investigation into Donald Trump's tax records that shows his daughter Ivanka Trump was paid as both an officer of and as a consultant to the Trump Organization.
"The Times described in detail financial records they discovered that showed Ivanka Trump being paid both as an employee of the Trump Organization and as a consultant to the Trump Organization in a way that seemed custom designed to try and evade taxes, both for the company and for her," Maddow said. "That is the executive scheme described at the end of the indictment. Prosecutors say that Weisselberg benefited from such a scheme and that other executives did too. They are not named in this indictment. But that is the Ivanka scheme described last fall in the New York Times."
New York Times reporter Susanne Craig echoed Maddow's observations, saying that the schemes described in the indictment felt "of a piece" with evidence she, Russ Buettner, and Mike McIntire uncovered while investigating Trump's tax records last fall. She said that the New York Times tracked a consulting fee that was paid out to a company called TTT (short for Trump, Trump, Trump) and then transferred to Ivanka Trump, who is listed as an officer of both the Trump Organization and TTT.
"What we in our reporting suspected is that this was an attempt by Donald Trump to reduce his taxable income and to transfer money to his kids," Craig said. "We didn't have access to other people's tax information to see if potentially Eric Trump was getting some of these payments, if Donald Trump Jr. was getting some of these payments, but they are also part of that company that was getting the money that went to Ivanka."
Craig went on to say that the New York Attorney General has previously investigated TTT, and that prosecutors are likely "looking at" the connection between the shell company and the Trump Organization's tax evasion efforts.
Mary Trump, the former president's niece and author of Trump family expose "Too Much and Never Enough," said that the Trump children should be "anxious" at the prospect of being charged by the Manhattan DA, and that such charges could sow division within the family.
"As far as Donald's concerned, they have what they have because of him, and they should be willing to take whatever hit they're going to take," Trump said. "I think he would be surprised to learn that I don't believe that my cousins would exercise that kind of loyalty towards him because his relationship with them and their relationship with him is entirely transactional and conditional. So they're not going to risk anything for him, just as he won't risk anything for them."
You can watch the segment below via Youtube: