Cramm for 7/2/21


The Trump Org has been charged with running a 15-year tax scheme. 



The other day, it was reported that a grand jury had indicted the Trump Organization and one of its top execs (a guy named Allen Weisselberg) in connection with a tax investigation conducted by New York’s attorney general and Manhattan’s district attorney’s office. But not much was known about the charges themselves. 



Scratch that, because yesterday, prosecutors officially charged the Trump Org with running a 15-year tax scheme to help its execs evade taxes by secretly giving them fringe benefits. Plus pointed fingers at Weisselberg for personally avoiding taxes on $1.7 million in bonuses and luxury perks that should’ve been counted as income. He faces charges like grand larceny and tax fraud. You read that right. 



Explosive. For many reasons. The obvious: the family biz of Donald Trump - the former prez of the United States - was just criminally charged. But this latest news is also a big deal because it means that prosecutors are putting some extra pressure on Weisselberg - the Trump Org’s chief financial officer - to turn on the biz and aid in the inquiry. Not to mention these charges could lay the groundwork for the next steps in the probe, which will focus on Trump himself. 



Expect to keep hearing about this over the coming months. TBD, TBD, TBD. 


ABUSE: Over the past few years, lots of former Boy Scouts have lobbed sex abuse accusations at scoutmasters and other leaders. Think: over 84,000. What was also being lobbed at the Boy Scouts of America (aka the BSA): lawsuits. So yesterday, the BSA reached an $850 million settlement with those victims. It’s the largest settlement in a child sexual abuse case in US history. Not a typo. This comes after the BSA filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. In other news, the wealth management firm that was set to act as co-conservator of Britney Spears’ financial dealings just asked to ditch the arrangement. The biz says it originally thought Spears was willingly in the conservatorship, but learned otherwise after the singer’s testimony last week. 


DEMOCRACY: ICYMI, lately, people have been taking to the streets in Eswatini (formerly known as Swaziland) to demand democratic reforms and accuse King Mswati III (who’s ruled the kingdom for about 30 years) of repression. Some have barricaded roads and set fire to buildings, many of which have ties to the royal family. In response, the gov’s imposed a nightly curfew, while soldiers have reportedly been assaulting people believed to be protesters. Meanwhile, the US Supreme Court just upheld voting restrictions in Arizona. It’s a major blow to Dems and voting rights activists. And in other US news, the Justice Dept is pausing federal executions, reversing a Trump-era decision that led to a resurgence of the practice. 


DISASTERS: The death toll from the extreme heat in the Pacific Northwest just keeps rising. See: nearly 100 deaths in Washington and Oregon alone have now been linked to the record-breaking temps. Stay tuned. Meanwhile, the African Union special envoy tasked with efforts to get coronavirus vaccines for the continent is not happy with the European Union and COVAX (as in the global vaccine-sharing initiative). Hint: he said “not one dose, not one vial, has left a European factory for Africa.” Yes, really. FYI, the continent has the lowest vaccination rate in the world, with just 1 percent of Africans fully vaccinated against the virus. While we’re on the subject: the World Health Organization just warned everyone that Europe is at risk of a new wave of the virus. Because, the delta variant and increased socializing.


Pinterest:” what just banned ads relating to weight loss. Three cheers. 


“Richard Branson will attempt to beat Jeff Bezos to space” - an actual headline. It’s like the Space Race, minus the stakes. 

Just a heads up that we're taking next week off, but we'll be back in your inbox on July 12th. See you then!

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