Follow The Money and Paper Trail

https://www.politico.com/f/?id=0000015b-2115-d4bd-a5df-bbd77cd10001

Former President Donald Trump gives a press conference with his attorney Sheri Dillon on Jan. 11, 2017 in New York.

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I just watched Rachel Maddow and Lawence O’Donnel. They talked about an investigation being conducted under wraps, and do not want the the FBI to say what it is. I highly suspect they were looking for THE FAKE EMPTY PAPERS that Trump holds his hand over – while Sheri Dillon looks guilty as all hell. She works for Morgon Lewis which is more of a Russian Law firm, than American. Trump showed an interest in buying the old Moscow Hotel. Did he have backers who wanted to invest – but without the IRS seeing the money that surfaces. Were Russian Oligarchs investing in American Real-estate? They don’t want to pay taxes, either. Monsey Laundering is going on. Offshore banks are getting risky. You need a SECURE PLACE to store the Paper Trail – at least! What about…..The White House and the National Archives? Winning a second term was vital. This explains why Trump was so VICIOUS towards the Eighty Million Democrats – because they represented -WHAT COULD GO WRONG with the greatest scam in world history! This is why Fox News and others want Putin to destroy Ukraine – that was supposed to take six days. Was Putin going after partners that wanted OUT after Trump lost?

Study the photo of Trump with three members of his family – that he would want to PROTECT – keep from going to prison. Who’s the dude with the white hair giving body language that says he’s not really apart of a crime family. Does it make sense that Pense did not want to get in that car while the Jan. 6th Insurrection is going on. Was he a – real target? What if he – sang – and said there was nothing on those papers. How many investors – would got down – in America and Russia?

I suspect The Trump Gang took those documents in order to have an excuse, when the Investigators asks about those papers – some day. You can say, a bad guy stole them when he stole top secret docs.

Watch the video below! Trump says the Intelligence community was after him. Dillon says the Trump family will not be making any foreign investments. I believe Trump was with Morgon Lewis since 2006. I am sure they found him many tax loopholes. Fred Fielding is present. What if a International Law firm becomes so rich, powerful, and connected THEY wonder if they could TAKE THE WHITE HOUSE? They would need a good Front Man, a Top Salesman in the Showroom. They would want to control all THE PAPER. No way would they want a REAL RECORD to exist.

A Law firm captured the Presidency and the White House?

How much money did the Trump Family Cartel owe……The Firm?

John Presco

President: Royal Rosamond Press

“Dillon, best known for standing by Trump in a 2016 press conference in which he vowed to step away from his businesses and eventually make his tax returns public, was also reportedly involved in the appraisal of another conservation easement at the center of the probe—this one for a Trump property in Los Angeles.

Feb. 5, 2021, 2:31 AMListen

  • Morgan Lewis lawyers forced to turn over Trump documents
  • Investigators haven’t publicly accused attorneys of wrongdoing

A court order forcing some of Donald Trump’s former top tax lawyers to give thousands of documents to investigators shows the risk attorneys face when their own actions go under a microscope.

Russian Law Restricts Compliance with US National Defense Authorization Act – Publications | Morgan Lewis

Trump Tax Saga Highlights Line Between Lawyering, Complicity (bloomberglaw.com)

Christina Renner

christina.renner@morganlewis.com

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Christina Renner concentrates her practice on European Union and German merger control, competition, and antitrust law, with experience in cartels and general behavioral matters, abuse of dominance, and EU state aid laws. Christina regularly advises clients concerning mergers reviewed by the European Commission and the German Federal Cartel Office, as well as the French, Austrian, and Belgian competition authorities. She has experience handling multi-jurisdictional filings for a variety of clients and regularly advises on complex competition compliance matters.

Morgan Lewis Drops Trump as Client as N.Y. Tax Probe Continues

Jan. 20, 2021, 4:00 PMListen

  • Firm has represented Trump on tax, D.C. hotel matters
  • Move follows a similar decision by Seyfarth Shaw

Law firm Morgan, Lewis & Bockius is dropping former President Donald Trump and his businesses as clients in the midst of an ongoing probe over alleged tax fraud.

“We have had a limited representation of the Trump Organization and Donald Trump in tax-related matters,” a firm spokeswoman told Bloomberg Law Wednesday. “For those matters not already concluded, we are transitioning as appropriate to other counsel.”

Morgan Lewis tax lawyers Sheri Dillon and William Nelson have been among Trump’s key legal advisers on the former president’s refusal to release his tax returns, and on investigations regarding filings for various Trump businesses. Dillon reportedly was asked to testify in an ongoing probe by New York Attorney General Letitia James into allegations the Trump Organization falsely inflated its assets to get loans and obtain tax benefits.

The firm’s decision to walk away from Trump and his companies, first reported by The American Lawyer, follows a similar decision by global law firm Seyfarth Shaw in the wake of the Jan. 6 riots at the U.S. Capitol. Several businesses, including Deutsche Bank and property management firm Cushman & Wakefield, have also recently said they will stop working with Trump and his companies, citing the former president’s role in stoking the violent protests.

Morgan Lewis didn’t say why it decided to walk away from Trump or how quickly it will transition out of the Trump work. The Trump Organization didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Mulvaney: Incompetence possible explanation in docs probe (msn.com)

Fred F. Fielding – Wikipedia

Trump’s Messaging on FBI Search Echoes His Statements on Jan. 6 (msn.com)

In such a fraught moment, Trump returned on Monday to a playbook he previously used on Jan. 6, 2021: seemingly offering to help calm his supporters while actually feeding their anger by describing that anger as justified.

Russian Law Restricts Compliance with US National Defense Authorization Act – Publications | Morgan Lewis

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Trump’s Conflict-of-Interest Attorney Used to Be Hillary Clinton Supporter

RONN BLITZER Jan 11th, 2017, 1:32 pm

During Donald Trump‘s press conference on Wednesday, he introduced his attorney, Sheri Dillon, who spoke about how she will be helping the President-elect navigate his business and potential conflict of interest issues so that he is not a part of business operations. She backed up Trump by saying that conflict of interest laws don’t apply to the President, and that Trump is voluntarily taking these measures. Dillon has a history of working with Trump, but she may not have always supported him.

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According to a LawNewz.com search, Federal Election Commission records show that Dillon has supported Hillary Clinton in the past. Records from 2007 show $1,500 in donations to Hillary Clinton for President, when Clinton was running in the primaries against Barack Obama. Dillon is listed in the form as an attorney in Washington, D.C. working for the firm McKee Nelson. Her LinkedIn profile confirms that she did work for McKee Nelson from 1999-2009, before moving on to two other firms and then Morgan Lewis. Records show she didn’t donate to any candidate this election cycle.

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Dillon has an extensive background in tax law. She is a graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center and has appeared before the U.S. Tax Court, as well as district and appellate courts. According to her law firm bio, she has experience in tax audits and appeals.

letter posted on Trump’s website indicates that Dillon and colleague William Nelson have represented Trump as tax counsel since 2005. Dillon, a partner in the D.C. office of law firm Morgan Lewis & Bokius, said in that same letter that IRS audits of Trump’s taxes from 2002 through 2008 are closed, “without assessment or payment, on a net basis, of any deficiency.” Trump has argued that he cannot divulge any of his tax returns due to ongoing audits, but this letter seems to indicate that he would be able to reveal records from those years.

Of course, donating to Clinton in 2007 doesn’t mean she supported her in 2016. Even Trump is known to have contributed to Clinton in the past. Also, Dillon’s representation of Trump now doesn’t necessarily reflect any attitude she may have towards his politics.

Trump Tax Saga Highlights Line Between Lawyering, Complicity

Feb. 5, 2021, 2:31 AMListen

  • Morgan Lewis lawyers forced to turn over Trump documents
  • Investigators haven’t publicly accused attorneys of wrongdoing

A court order forcing some of Donald Trump’s former top tax lawyers to give thousands of documents to investigators shows the risk attorneys face when their own actions go under a microscope.

Judge Arthur F. Engoron last week ordered law firm Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP to give New York Attorney General Letitia James reams of communications with former President Trump and his company. Morgan Lewis, which argued that the documents are shielded by attorney-client privilege, was required to turn them over by Thursday.

James’ probe comes as Morgan Lewis, which has long advised Trump on tax issues, is joining other law firms in a scramble to distance themselves from the former president and his businesses.

Lawyers generally are not responsible for the potential sins of their clients. There are limits, however, on aiding illegal activity or turning a blind eye to it. Tax investigators often turn their attention to the lawyers advising a person or company how far they can go.

“Lawyers are allowed to make mistakes, but they are not allowed to give intentionally bad advice or cover up a crime,” Betty Williams, a California tax lawyer, said.

James is looking into allegations that the Trump Organization manipulated the value of assets in order to get loans and tax benefits. She’s focusing on the appraisal of a more than 200-acre property in New York’s Westchester County, Bloomberg News recently reported.

James hasn’t publicly accused Morgan Lewis lawyers Sheri Dillon and William Nelson of any wrongdoing, and there is no indication that the firm’s lawyers are being targeted for misconduct in the investigation.

But James said the firm advised the company on two of the easements in question. She said Dillon was “primarily responsible” for handling a conservation easement donation for which the company obtained $21.1 million in tax deductions.

Dillon, best known for standing by Trump in a 2016 press conference in which he vowed to step away from his businesses and eventually make his tax returns public, was also reportedly involved in the appraisal of another conservation easement at the center of the probe—this one for a Trump property in Los Angeles.

Dillon, Nelson, and Morgan Lewis spokeswoman Emily Carhart didn’t respond to a request for comment. Morgan Lewis partner Timothy Stephens, who is representing the firm in New York’s legal action, likewise couldn’t be reached. Dillon’s attorney, Zuckerman Spaeder partner Graeme Bush, declined comment.

Fabien Levy, a spokesman for James, declined to comment on the investigation.

Probing Property Deals

Williams said valuations like those at issue in the Trump probe are commonly performed by accounting professionals and with the advice of tax lawyers.

“You get a range in terms of how much clients want to push the envelope,” she said. “Some say, ‘Look, let’s roll the dice. Tell me how far I can go.’”

Even if New York authorities wanted to probe any wrong doing by attorneys—and there’s no indication in the Trump case they want to do that—proving such instances are difficult, said Tyler Maulsby, a New York lawyer who defends attorneys accused of malpractice.

“There’s a very high bar to show that a lawyer has committed a crime, as opposed to providing legal advice,” Maulsby said. “These are very difficult cases to prove.”

The investigations have drawn Morgan Lewis lawyers Dillon and Nelson into the public eye. The pair has been among Trump’s closest tax advisers.

Dillon worked at a handful of Washington law firms before joining Morgan Lewis in 2015. She stood by President-elect Trump during a closely watched 2016 press conference in which he pledged to divest from various business interests and pointed to stacks of documents that he said were tax returns and other information that he would make public once certain audits were completed. That appearance was later lampooned on “Saturday Night Live.”

Nelson served as the Internal Revenue Service’s chief counsel in the Reagan administration. He joined Dillon in writing a highly-publicized 2017 letter to Trump confirming the then-president’s claim that he had few business ties to Russia. Nelson and Dillon said at the time they had reviewed a decade worth of tax returns and concluded that he did not owe money to Russian lenders.

‘Smell Test’

Legal ethics rules typically make it clear that lawyers cannot “bury their heads in the sand” when they suspect their clients are committing crimes, said Maulsby, a partner with Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz in New York. “It’s a black letter rule—you cannot knowingly assist your client in committing a crime or a fraud.”

Some ethics rules assume attorneys should be able to “reasonably infer” that their clients may be involved in wrongdoing and take steps to address it.

Advising clients on tax matters can be especially tricky, in part because of the complicated nature of the issues at stake, according to Maulsby, Williams, and William Freivogel, a Chicago-based independent consultantcy for law firms on ethics and professional liability issues.

“Because of the complexity of tax laws, clients tend to rely so much on their attorneys for guidance,” Maulsby said.

Legal ethics rules have tightened in recent years, making it clearer to attorneys who historically may have been reluctant to concede that “they could be on the hook” for their clients’ behavior, Freivogel said.

“Law firms are increasingly getting wise to the smell test,” said Freivogel. “That is, if it doesn’t smell right, let’s be more careful” about representing clients engaged in potentially unlawful activities.

When Advice is Criminal

The consequences for lawyers who get too close to the fire range from licensing-related punishments to sanctions and civil liability. They can extend to criminal penalties in the rarest cases, Maulsby said.

New York lawyer Peter DiChiara helped his client Morrie Tobin hide control of Environmental Packaging Technologies Holdings Inc. so he could dump shares and “profit at the expense of defrauded investors,” according to the complaint filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Overseas, Hanno Berger, one of Germany’s most profitable tax lawyers, was charged last October along with four bankers at M.M. Warburg & Co. over a scandal that’s rocked the financial industry. It is the second indictment Berger has faced over a controversial trading strategy. He has repeatedly denied the charges.

In 2009, Raymond R.J. Ruble, formerly of Sidley Austin and Brown & Wood, was sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison for writing letters that authorized bogus tax shelters KPMG accountants had created for wealthy customers. Federal prosecutors in Manhattan declined to seek criminal charges against Sidley, but the firm was forced to pay a $39.4 million civil penalty to the IRS.

And in a case one judge called “the biggest tax fraud prosecution ever,” several lawyers with the now-defunct Jenkens & Gilchrist engaged in a range of tax crimes. One highlight was a 20-year scheme that one of the lawyers, Paul Daugerdas, concocted that generated more than $7 billion in fraudulent tax losses—and yielded about $95 million in fees to the attorney personally.

—Donna Borak and Aysha Bagchi contributed to this report.

To contact the reporter on this story: Chris Opfer in New York at copfer@bloomberglaw.com
Sam Skolnik in Washington at sskolnik@bloomberglaw.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story:
John Hughes at jhughes@bloombergindustry.com

LAWFLASH

RUSSIAN LAW RESTRICTS COMPLIANCE WITH US NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT

May 23, 2022

Russia President Vladimir Putin signed the federal law, “On Amendments to the Federal Law ‘On Measures of Influence (Counteraction) on Unfriendly Actions of the United States of America and Other Foreign States,’” on May 1, substantially restricting the ability of Russian banks to disclose information to foreign regulators, in particular, under the US National Defense Authorization Act.

The Russian government introduced the law to State Duma in June 2021. As stated in the explanatory note, the purpose of the law is to protect Russia against legislative initiatives of “unfriendly states” for Russian banks to disclose bank secrecy under the threat of penalties.

Particularly, the law was prompted by the adoption of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 (NDAA) in the United States, which, among other things, entitles the US secretary of the treasury and the US attorney general to request any information relating to the accounts of foreign banks (including Russian banks) that maintain correspondent accounts in the United States (Section 6308) that are subject to certain types of investigations specified in the NDAA.

PROCEDURE FOR DISCLOSURE OF INFORMATION: CONSENT OF AUTHORIZED GOVERNMENT BODY

According to the law, Russian banks are now banned from sharing information about their customers, transactions, and representatives of their customers and beneficiaries and beneficial owners (the Forbidden Information) with government bodies of foreign states (including judicial authorities) without the prior consent of the authorized government body.

Each time a Russian bank is requested to disclose the Forbidden Information by a foreign government body, it shall report such request to the Central Bank of Russia, which then passes this information on to the Russian authorized government body. If the authorized government body decides that the Forbidden Information may be disclosed, the prohibition shall not apply.

The Russian president shall determine which government body is authorized to grant the relevant permissions.

NO EFFECT ON FATCA AND CRS DISCLOSURES

At present, a similar procedure for disclosure of information is stipulated for sharing the banks’ records with foreign tax authorities.

Namely, according to Federal Law No. 173-FZ dated June 28, 2014, “On Peculiarities of Financial Transactions with Foreign Citizens and Legal Entities, on Amendments to the Code of Administrative Offences of the Russian Federation and the Repeal of Certain Provisions of Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation” (Law 173-FZ), Russian financial institutions may not disclose information about their customers to foreign tax authorities (or foreign tax agents authorized to withhold taxes) without the prior consent of the customer and the Russian Federal Service for Financial Monitoring (Rosfinmonitoring).

The Law expressly stipulates that it shall not apply to the disclosure of information under Law 173-FZ.

Consequently, the disclosure of information to foreign tax authorities is still regulated by Law 173-FZ, and the new procedure shall only apply to the disclosure of information to all other (non-tax) foreign public authorities.

CONSEQUENCES FOR RUSSIAN BANKS AND THEIR COUNTERPARTIES

As noted above, the law shall not apply to the disclosure of information to foreign tax authorities (including disclosure under FATCA, which falls within the provisions of Law 173-FZ).

However, it potentially may have a substantial impact on Russian banks. In particular, according to Section 6308 of the NDAA, a US financial institute may be obliged to terminate any correspondent relationship with a foreign bank that fails to comply with an order to disclose information to the US secretary of the treasury or the US attorney general issued under the NDAA.

Therefore, a correspondent account of a Russian bank may be closed if there is any delay on the part of the Russian authorized government body as to granting consent under the law, ultimately resulting in that bank not being able to clear cross-border US dollar payments. Similar consequences may appear in other jurisdictions.

Further, if the bank secrecy is required to be disclosed to a foreign public authority as part of non-Russian legal procedures, regulatory filing, multijurisdictional acquisition, or other similar circumstances, such disclosure of information shall be made in accordance with the procedure prescribed by the law, which may delay and complicate the relevant process.

Although it does not expressly follow, issues may arise if the law is interpreted broadly, i.e., as prohibiting the disclosure of bank secrecy in response to any requests coming from outside Russia (e.g., if such request were made by a foreign bank at the direction of the foreign public authority).

Trainee associate Egor Chubov contributed to this LawFlash.

UKRAINE CONFLICT: HOW TO MAINTAIN GLOBAL BUSINESS CONTINUITY

Our lawyers have long been trusted advisers to clients navigating the complex and quickly changing global framework of international sanctions. Because companies must closely monitor evolving government guidance to understand what changes need to be made to their global operations to maintain business continuity, we offer this centralized portal to share our insights and analyses. To receive the latest updates, subscribe to our Ukraine Conflict: How to Maintain Global Business Continuity mailing list.

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From our global platform across Europe, Asia, North America, and the Middle East, clients rely on our team’s deep familiarity with Russia’s legal system and markets to achieve their most sophisticated business goals. Our team features seasoned lawyers with experience throughout Russia, and we collaborate closely with lawyers in our two Kazakhstan offices (Almaty and Nur-Sultan) as well as with local counsel across Russia and the rest of the Commonwealth of Independent States.

We handle a variety of business and investment transactions, regulatory matters, and disputes, including major mergers and acquisitions; joint venture; private equity and sovereign wealth fund investments; financings and capital markets offerings; commercial property developments; intellectual property, data privacy, and employment law matters; compliance advisory and investigations; and commercial litigation and arbitration.

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UPDATE: RUSSIA ADOPTS DECREE ON REPAYMENT IN RUSSIAN RUBLES OF DEBT TO FOREIGN CREDITORS

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UPDATE: RUSSIA ADOPTS COUNTERMEASURES TO SUPPORT ITS FINANCIAL MARKETS

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RUSSIA CHAPTER – ARBITRATION 2022, LEXOLOGY / GETTING THE DEAL THROUGH

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MORGAN LEWIS SPARK | Q4 2021

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About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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