A Los Angeles judge says he will consider dismissing Banc of California’s case against President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman and the latter’s son-in-law for allegedly defrauding the institution on a loan unless the bank files evidence between now and early February to support its claims.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Gregory Alarcon made the decision after none of the parties or their lawyers appeared for a Dec. 3 hearing. He set another hearing for Feb. 3 and said he will dismiss the lawsuit if the bank does not file any court papers by then, according to court documents obtained by City News Service.
The bank is seeking a $763,887 default judgment against Manafort’s son-in-law, Jeffrey Yohai, and Baylor Holding LLC, a company Yohai and Manafort owned.
Jarrett Osborne-Revis, a Banc of California attorney, had told the judge Oct. 10 that the bank would proceed to trial against Manafort and that he was not included in the request for a default judgment. But the Dec. 3 court minute order showed that no documents had been filed in support of the default judgment.
The Banc of California’s complaint, filed Feb. 28, alleges Paul Manafort and Yohai, failed to pay what they owed on the loan in 2016. The suit alleges fraud, negligent misrepresentation and breach of loan document contracts.
Yohai was once married to Manafort’s daughter, Jessica. They divorced in 2017.
Manafort and Yohai lied on their credit applications and gave the bank false personal financial statements, according to the complaint. The pair said they wanted to finance ventures in Los Angeles and told the bank they already owned property through Baylor Holding LLC that were free and clear of all liens, the suit states.
Additionally, Manafort told the bank he had a net income of $4 million, and both men promised the loan would be the start of a `highly profitable” relationship between them and the bank, the suit says.
Manafort was previously convicted of tax and bank fraud in Virginia. In a separate case, he also pleaded guilty to conspiracy against the United States and conspiracy to obstruct justice. He forfeited more than $22 million in cash and property to the federal government and promised to cooperate with Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
A federal judge found Manafort, 70, had violated the plea deal and a sentencing memo from Mueller described Manafort as a liar who “presents a grave risk of recidivism.” He was sentenced in March to more than seven years in prison.
A New York judge Wednesday dismissed a state mortgage fraud indictment against Manafort, citing double jeopardy laws.
Yohai pleaded guilty in February 2018 to conspiracy to commit bank wire fraud. Prosecutors said Yohai swindled numerous individuals and lenders out of a total of more than $13 million through deals to develop real estate in wealthy Los Angeles neighborhoods.
He was later accused of engaging in similar frauds, prompting his re-arrest and a second guilty plea in June of this year on another charge of wire fraud conspiracy. He was sentenced in November to more than nine years in prison.
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