Donald Capone – by The Ink


Donald Trump’s fate in first criminal trial Now it’s up to the jury to decide. But did the district attorney make the right decision to bring the case in the first place?

in his Column published in Lawfare yesterdayRoger Parloff, a former lawyer and legal commentator, noted that what we are seeing in Trump’s hush money trial is very similar to what we have seen historically in cases that brought down major organized crime figures. — Smart prosecutors eventually get results. no A crime for which one might expect or wish to see punishment.

Called the “Al Capone factor.” In Parloff’s estimation, that’s exactly what District Attorney Alvin Bragg had in mind when he filed the indictment, which ultimately leads us here. Far from being a minor issue, these payments were a clear breach of the law and, given the overwhelming evidence available, were likely to result in a conviction. But it’s also a stronger case and easier to make than other offenses.

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The fact that payback appears to be a minor issue confuses some commentators on the political left and center, who view it as minor, distracting, or too focused on the offender rather than the crime itself, for the crime Behavior opens doors. But to Parlov, the case made sense.

Weighing this evidence in the context of the many civil fraud cases for which Trump was convicted, as well as the many crimes for which his close corporations and most important business colleagues, Weisselberg and Michael Cohen, were convicted, I was convinced. District Attorney Bragg was correct in filing this case.

Remember: Al Capone did end up in Alcatraz.

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the fact is Al Capone eventually convicted of tax evasion It’s not his other crimes that cast a long shadow over gangster movies and people’s understanding of the law. Can you talk about why gangsters keep getting arrested for things other than “object crimes”? Can you put the Trump hush-money case into this context? Why aren’t federal prosecutors pursuing him directly for campaign finance violations?

This is a good question, but first a bit of clarification is needed. When I use the term “object crime,” I am using it as a term related to the specific New York State statute used in the Trump prosecution: falsification of business records. The crime itself is a misdemeanor under Penal Code Section 175.05. But if the crime was committed with the intent to commit or conceal another crime—for example, in this case, an election law criminal conspiracy—then the crime becomes a felony under the law. Criminal Law 175.10. this Other crimes A person is charged with intent to commit or conceal — factors that elevate a crime to a felony — known as an “object crime.” (My colleague Quinta Jurecic discussed this situation here.)

Sometimes high-level organized crime figures excel at evading criminal prosecution precisely because they have to: crime is vital to their business. They have become very sophisticated about how to build a case and what evidence to use. So they take precautions. For example, they often commit crimes by issuing orders to several levels of subordinates, which are conveyed in “codes” or euphemistic language. They avoid email. They spoke carefully, assuming they might be eavesdropped.

There are signs Trump is taking some precautions. He is known not to use email and has reportedly angrily criticized his lawyers for taking notes. Michael Cohen testified that Trump often gives orders through indirect language and hints, like a mob boss.

Trump is accused of using intermediaries, including Cohen and his chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, to carry out the crimes. As we have seen, Cohen faced credibility issues – as did many cooperating witnesses because they helped the defendant commit the crime before presenting the state’s evidence. Weisselberg, who has pleaded guilty to 15 felonies and is currently in jail on additional perjury charges, remains loyal to Trump and has not been subpoenaed by either party. As a result, prosecutors have tried to present their case largely through emails, call logs, text messages and, in some cases, audio recordings that Cohen secretly made.

Can you explain why this needs to be a state case rather than a federal case? There’s certainly a lack of clarity and consistency between state and federal election laws, but can you explain that?



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