Kevin O’Leary calls out potential seizure of Trump’s assets: ‘What happens in Venezuela, not New York’

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Investment guru Kevin O’Leary was sharply critical Monday on “Mornings with Maria” over the potential seizure of former President Trump’s assets should he fail to pay the nine-figure fine in his civil fraud case, calling it akin to a situation in places like Venezuela.

The 2024 Republican frontrunner is currently on the hook for just over $354 million, with post-judgment interest accruing at nearly $112,000 per day. New York Attorney General Letitia James has vowed that if Trump fails to pay, the state will start seizing his assets.  

As a businessman, investor and O’Leary Ventures Chairman, O’Leary said the move by the New York court has developers asking whether the fine penalty interest is commensurate with the act.

“Remember there is no money lost, there’s no victim here, so essentially just under half a billion-dollar fine for a situation where no monies were lost and the harmed party, supposedly the banks, were fully paid back,” he said. “We are wondering does this make sense, asking ourselves how long will it take for the appellate court to bring down to a what reasonable number might be, I have no idea what that is.”

New York Judge Arthur Engoron ruled that Trump and the defendants were liable for “persistent and repeated fraud,” “falsifying business records,” “issuing false financial statements,” “conspiracy to falsify false financial statements,” “insurance fraud,” and “conspiracy to commit insurance fraud.” Trump’s legal team has appealed the ruling

In the meantime, while the case is being litigated, O’Leary said investors are not putting any new money into projects in New York, adding he is “very concerned” about the next step of seizing assets. 

“Capital comes to America because of the stability of the justice system,” he said. “This is not stable, in terms of many people’s eyes, domestically and internationally, seizing assets happens in Venezuela, it doesn’t happen in New York. So this is a little scary.”

While this is going on, he said it is going to affect New York’s success as the top state for industries like hydropower, commercial real estate and AI data and will instead lead to a “quiet exodus of capital leaving New York.”

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“It’s going to North Dakota, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Montana, Tennessee, they have the same power and if you look at governors there, spending that much money, you are in partnership with the government,” he said. “New York is no longer on that list.”

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