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Prosecutors Pit Trump Org Dynasties Against Each Other

5 13 107
24.09.2021

New York prosecutors appear to have found an opening they can exploit to pry open the notoriously insulated Trump Organization and get past its mob-like code of silence—by leveraging a long-running feud between two warring family fiefdoms.

It’s the company’s long-time chief financial officer and his son, Allen and Barry Weisselberg, versus the chief operating officer and his son, Matthew Calamari Sr. and Jr.

The target of this three-year criminal investigation has always seemed to be former President Donald Trump himself. To nail him, investigators might need to flip Allen Weisselberg, his right-hand finance man. But to get that guy, they’ll need to leverage his deputy, the accountant Jeffrey S. McConney. And it looks like they’ve found an avenue to pressure him: “Matty” Calamari Jr.

According to two people familiar with the matter, prosecutors are trying to use the Trump Organization’s young head of corporate security, Matty, to elicit damning information about the company’s controller, McConney. One of those sources said Matty’s only tie to McConney is that the accountant prepared his individual taxes years ago—and prosecutors are exploring whether those taxes accurately reported details about his residency and corporate apartment and vehicle.

Hence why “Matty Jr.” was subpoenaed to testify before the grand jury on Sept. 2. McConney was also brought in a second time later that same day, according to this person.

It’s gotten so apparent that, in multiple meetings and phone calls since the spring, Donald Trump has reminded business associates and other members of his inner orbit about the need for Trump Organization staff to “stick together” and stay strong, according to two other people familiar with the matter.

The twice-impeached former president’s point was simple: his staffers and confidants should not allow New York investigators to manipulate or play employees off one another over the course of the criminal probe into the Trump family empire.

Those calls for continued loyalty apply to the elder Weisselberg even as his name keeps getting stripped from Trump corporate documents since he was indicted this summer. (A recent email reviewed by The Daily Beast shows that he now goes by “senior advisor.”)

But prosecutors are counting on the ex-president’s calls for solidarity to fall on just enough deaf ears.

The enmity between the Weisselbergs and Calamaris dates back decades, and it centers on their unwavering love of Trump. Two longtime associates described a Shakespearean conflict of rival dynasties, with dukes competing for the king’s favor.

“They hate each other. It’s a war,” The Daily Beast was told last month by Jennifer Weisselberg, who is undergoing a contentious divorce with Barry Weisselberg and has become a witness for New York prosecutors.

If the latest gambit works, McConney could be a useful witness. For more than 30 years, McConney has reported directly to Allen Weisselberg—cutting checks, processing transactions, and implementing deals. Theoretically, the trusted company money man should have some knowledge about any possible financial crimes.

Until now, the odds of utilizing McConney seemed slim. He has a history of being a loyal company footsoldier who despises the........

© The Daily Beast


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