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Lawyer Connected to Trump Passes Away Unexpectedly : ‘Horrifying’

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


A lawyer who was connected to former President Donald Trump has died “unexpectedly” at the age of 48, according to his shocked family.

John Meringolo, a New York defense lawyer and Pace University Law School professor, died Nov. 16, according to his family. Two months ago, he requested to represent the Trump Organization and Trump Payroll Corp. at the last moment.

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The Western Journal noted: “Meringolo told the judge in another case — the retrial of alleged ‘We Build the Wall’ scammer Timothy Shea, who stands accused of defrauding donors of hundreds of thousands of dollars — that he had been retained by the Trump family to defend its companies after CFO Allen Weisselberg pleaded guilty in a deal that required him to testify in the case.”

“I have been retained to represent the Trump Payroll Corporation in its criminal trial scheduled to begin on the very same date as Mr. Shea’s retrial,” Meringolo wrote Judge Analisa Torres on Sept. 14, as he requested that she delay the Shea case for three weeks, reports the New York Daily News. But the judge denied the request.

Meringolo also requested that Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan on Sept. 2 delay a trial against the Trump companies, but that request was also turned down.

“That motion I received last week, or the notice of appearance, frankly, was almost bizarre, and it was dealt with appropriately,” Merchan said. “I’m repeating, we are not delaying this trial.”

In a statement to the Daily News, Richard Meringolo confirmed his son’s death and added that it came without warning.

“It’s horrifying,” he told the Daily News. “It’s a very sad day.”

The cause of death has not been revealed.

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Pace University’s Elisabeth Haub School of Law, where the defense lawyer taught, noted several high profile cases Meringolo argued and won:

Mr. Meringolo negotiated a historical $10,000,000.00 settlement for the Estate of Joseph P. Graffagnino, a New York City firefighter, who died in the infamous Deutsche Bank Building fire. The building had been damaged during the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001. The New York Daily News reported, “A document filed in court states that Meringolo will take 23% of the settlement, much less than the usual one-third cut.”

In United States v. Ofer Biton, Judge Nicholas Garaufis denied the Government’s direct appeal and affirmed the magistrate’s order granting bail to Mr. Biton, an Israeli national, after seven bail hearings.

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In United States v. John Venizelos, Mr. Venizelos pled guilty in the Eastern District of New York to participating in a $1 billion international drug trafficking enterprise, which had been in existence for more than a decade.

In United States v Yesid Rios Suarez, Mr. Rios Suarez pled guilty in the Southern District of New York to participating in an international conspiracy to distribute cocaine from Colombia to Venezuela, Mexico, and the United States.

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