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Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg stopped pursuing charges against former President Trump and suspended the investigation “indefinitely,” one of the top prosecutors who resigned from the office said in his resignation letter–but disagreed with the decision.
Mark Pomerantz and Carey Dunne, who had been leading the investigation under former DA Cyrus Vance, submitted their resignations last month, after Bragg began raising doubts about pursuing a case against Trump.
“You have reached the decision not to go forward with the grand jury presentation and not to seek criminal charges at the present time,” Pomerantz wrote in his resignation letter, first reported by the New York Times. “The investigation has been suspended indefinitely.”
“Of course, that is your decision to make,” Pomerantz wrote to Bragg. “I do not question your authority to make it, and I accept that you have made it sincerely.”
However, Pomerantz said that “a decision made in good faith may nevertheless be wrong.”
FILE – Alvin Bragg, Manhattan District Attorney, speaks with supporters on election night in New York, Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021. (AP Photo/Craig Ruttle, File)
(AP Photo/Craig Ruttle, File)
“I believe that your decision not to prosecute Donald Trump now, and on the existing record, is misguided and completely contrary to the public interest,” Pomerantz wrote. “I therefore cannot continue in my current position.”
Pomerantz wrote that he believed Trump was “guilty of numerous felony violations” and said it would be a “grave failure of justice not to prosecute him.”
Pomerantz and Dunne had previously agreed to stay on in the district attorney’s office after Vance’s term expired in January and Bragg took the helm.
At the time, Bragg said he was getting up to speed on the Trump investigation and vowed to “follow the facts.”
“It’s a matter that’s personally, as you would imagine, on my radar screen and that I’m mindful of and paying attention to,” Bragg said.
But while Pomerantz and his team were prepared to move forward with charges against Trump, Bragg was not.
But despite that decision, Pomerantz, in his resignation letter, claimed his team that had been investigating Trump “harbors no doubt about whether he committed crimes—he did.”
Wide angle front elevation of Trump tower on Fifth Avenue Manhattan NYC
But a source familiar with the investigation pointed Fox News Digital, specifically, to Trump’s “Statement of Financial Condition,” which reports an entity’s assets, liabilities and abilities to raise and use funds.
The source told Fox News Digital that Trump did not inflate his financial statements, as prosecutors had anticipated, but instead, undervalued his assets.
The source also told Fox News that Trump never defaulted on payments to banks, and said his statement of financial condition included “caveats” which “refuted” claims by the DA’s office.
One source familiar with the investigation claimed the case against Trump was political and fueled by the former president’s political enemies, and told Fox News that Pomerantz “shouldn’t have been in the DA’s office in the first place.”
Before joining Vance’s office, Pomerantz was of counsel at New York law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. He took leave from the firm last year to join Vance’s office to investigate Trump’s financial dealings.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s brother, Robert Schumer, is a partner at the firm. Pomerantz donated to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign.
“It is a great tribute to the system that Alvin Bragg came in and stopped the unfairness against Trump,” a source close to the investigation told Fox News. “Bragg and his team did the legally and morally correct thing, and they didn’t go the typical political route.”
The source added that Bragg and his team “realized they had no case, they stopped it.”
FILE – In this Friday Feb. 21, 2020 file photo, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr, foreground right, accompanied by Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi, left, leave Harvey Weinstein’s rape trial at criminal court in New York. Weinstein’s rape and sexual assault conviction resuscitated Vance’s lagging legacy, giving him a big, career-defining win, after he was dogged for much of his decade-long run as DA for turning down or dropping cases against powerful defendants. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)
“Bragg said the case is not provable,” the source said.
While many close to the investigation have signaled that it has been closed—specifically after Pomerantz and Dunne’s resignations—a spokesperson for Bragg insisted the probe “continues.”
“A team of experienced prosecutors is working every day to follow the facts and the law,” the spokesperson told Fox News. “There is nothing we can or should say at this juncture about an ongoing investigation.”
But former assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, Andy McCarthy, told Fox News that there are “many cases” in prosecutors offices that have not been closed, saying that is “of no importance.”
“What matters is whether there is activity in the investigation,” McCarthy said. “The technical matter of whether an office file is opened or closed is of no importance—the only thing that matters is are prosecutors actively investigating and is the grand jury collecting new evidence.”
Back in November, during the final weeks of Vance’s tenure, the Manhattan DA’s Office convened a new grand jury. That grand jury was set to run for six months.
“That means, come April they were up against a deadline with the grand jury,” McCarthy told Fox News. “If they hadn’t indicted by April, they would have had to decide whether to try to extend the grand jury term or start the investigation all over again with a new grand jury.”
A spokesperson for Bragg did not comment on whether his office could attempt to extend the grand jury term.
Bragg reportedly has told aides that in order for the case to move forward, new evidence would need to be discovered—but investigators reportedly view that scenario unlikely.
Meanwhile, Trump’s lawyer Ronald Fischetti told the New York Times that Pomerantz “had the opportunity to present the fruits of his investigation to the D.A. and his senior staff on several occasions and failed.”
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – JULY 01: Trump Organization finance chief Allen Weisselberg leaves a New York court after surrendering to authorities on July 01, 2021 in New York City. According to reports, federal prosecutors with the Manhattan district attorney’s office have charged the Trump Organization, and its CFO Weisselberg, with tax-related crimes. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images) _____ NEW YORK, NEW YORK – JUNE 30: Trump Tower, home to the Trump Organization, stands along Fifth Avenue on June 30, 2021 in New York City. According to reports, federal prosecutors with the Manhattan district attorney’s office are expected to charge the Trump Organization, and its CFO Allen Weisselberg, with tax-related crimes as soon as Thursday. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
(Spencer Platt/Getty Images )
But for the content of the case, McCarthy told Fox News that “inflating or deflating asset values is a commonality in industry.”
“A lot of it is legal, some of it is illegal, but it is almost never prosecuted,” McCarthy told Fox News. “And if they singled out Trump for prosecution, they would have a very significant selective prosecution defense to deal with.”
McCarthy also warned that had Bragg gone forward with the case, he would have had “a tabloid war with Trump and some of the New York media.”
“The only way to do something like that is to have a very strong case,” McCarthy said. “And in Bragg’s case, because he is a progressive prosecutor, it would have been a very bad look for him to be singling out Trump on comparatively trivial crimes, when he is lax in the prosecution of serious criminals in New York City.”
The investigation was opened by Vance in 2019 and was focused on possible bank, insurance and tax fraud. The case involved financial dealings of Trump’s Manhattan properties, including his flagship Fifth Avenue building, Trump Tower, and the valuation of his 213-acre estate Seven Springs in Westchester.
The probe led to tax fraud charges last July against The Trump Organization, and its finance chief Allen Weisselberg.
Weisselberg was accused of collecting more than $1.7 million in off-the-books compensation, including apartment rent, car payments and school tuition.
Both Weisselberg and the Trump Organization have pleaded not guilty.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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