Eric Trump testifies in New York civil fraud trial

In this courtroom sketch, Eric Trump testifies during the Trump Organization civil fraud trial in New York State Supreme Court on Thursday.
In this courtroom sketch, Eric Trump testifies during the Trump Organization civil fraud trial in New York State Supreme Court on Thursday. Jane Rosenberg/Reuters

Assistant Attorney General Andrew Amer’s examination of Eric Trump grew tense Thursday as the son of the former president grew visibly agitated when pressed about his understanding of his father’s financial statements that were used to support real estate transactions. 

Amer used a series of emails dating as far back as 2010 and phone conversations to argue that Eric Trump was familiar with the statements, contradicting his testimony. 

For instance, there was a series of February 2012 emails regarding the purchase of a golf club in Charlotte, North Carolina, which referenced a club board member reviewing personal financial statements at the Trump Organization’s New York office to ensure the club board of the company’s ability to run the club. In the email, Eric Trump expressed his concern over the confidentiality of the financial information to the board member. 

Amer pushed Eric Trump to acknowledge that, based on the written exchange, he must have known by 2012 that his father had personal financial statements used to support real estate transactions. Eric Trump asserted that the records shown in court don’t prove that the board member reviewed the statements of financial condition at issue in the civil case. 

“I understand we had financials as a company,” Eric Trump said. “I was not personally aware of the statement of financial condition. I did not work on the of financial condition. I’ve been very, very clear on that.” 

Amer then pointed back to Jeff McConney’s supporting data spreadsheet valuing Seven Springs, suggesting Eric Trump must have known about his father’s financial statements by the time that spreadsheet was created later that year. (McConney is a co-defendant.)

Amer also showed the court an email dated August 20, 2013, that former controller Jeff McConney sent Eric Trump expressly asking for help to value Seven Springs on his father’s annual financial statement. McConney also attached the supporting data spreadsheet for the previous year’s statement detailing the Seven Springs valuation including the note about a conversation with Eric in 2012. 

“So you did know about your father’s annual financial statement, as of August 20, 2013, didn’t you?” Amer asked. 
“It appears that way, yes,” Eric Trump said. 

Still, Eric Trump sought to distance himself from the statement, suggesting his input to McConney was related to plans for land development and not the values ascribed to the property on the spreadsheet. 

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