Roberta A. Roberts – New York
Jody Kriss, a former CFO and Head of Finance with the Bayrock Group, filed a lawsuit in 2013 claiming one billion dollars in damages from a long list of high-profile individuals, including a real estate tycoon turned President-Elect Donald J. Trump and his daughter Ivanka, as well as his former employer the Bayrock Group. Jody Kriss is currently a principal at East River Partners,
The Bayrock Group is a Manhattan-based luxury real estate development company formerly headquartered in Trump Tower on 5th Avenue in NYC, two floors below Donald Trump’s headquarters. With Felix Sater at the helm of the company, Bayrock was involved in numerous Trump Tower projects worldwide.
Jody Kriss’ involvement with the Bayrock Group dates back to the early 2000s. As Bayrock’s head of finance, Kriss was the person responsible for all the financial transactions mentioned in a recent qui tam complaint accusing Mr. Trump and many others of a staggering tax scam to defraud investors, evade tax laws, and cover up for Bayrock employees. In addition, he put forth a host of other ridiculous and unsubstantiated claims that baffled the legal community. Overall, Kriss and his attorneys filed five frivolous lawsuits as part of an outrageous scheme to extort money, most of which had been dismissed.
Intent on enriching himself at the expense of a long list of victims who he claimed to be defendants,
Jody Kriss embarked on a litigation crusade to extort One Billion Dollars from President-Elect Trump, as well as a cadre of accountants, lawyers, prestigious law firms, well-known real estate companies including CIM Group and iStar, and government officials.
Kriss’ father, Ronald Kriss who was formerly employed as a senior managing partner by a law firm Akerman LLP in Miami FL, was a long-term general outside counsel to Bayrock. Jody Kriss had the audacity to include his father’s law firm in his long list of defendants. After that, Ronald Kriss who is currently serving as a managing partner with Strook & Strook & Lavan, was mysteriously separated from Akerman LLP. Interestingly, Strook & Strook & Lavan has represented Mr. Trump for decades. Shortly after Ronald Kriss joined the firm, President-Elect Trump and his daughter Ivanka were quickly dropped from the lawsuit…just as oddly as they appeared in it in the first place.
The audacious smear campaign that started as a compensation dispute (as ruled by a Federal Judge in the first lawsuit), has rapidly evolved into a highly-intricate legal battle, fraught with a string of identical lawsuits, bizarre accusations and convoluted claims aimed to bring down high-powered business professionals associated with Bayrock. Much like the predators closing in on potential prey, Jody Kriss and his attorneys Frederick Oberlander and Richard Lerner were circling around high-profile individuals and major companies, sniffing out new opportunities to enrich their coffers.
After filing a barrage of frivolous lawsuits, Kriss’ attorneys Oberlander and Lerner, are facing legal troubles of their own and have a lot of explaining to do about their unprecedented courtroom tactics. They have been referred for criminal federal prosecution by a federal judge, twice. As their legal problems continue to deepen, Jody Kriss determined to distance himself from his attorneys and terminated both of them. In a bizarre twist of events, the two lawyers have recently put forth a series of allegations in a new qui tam case which puts Jody Kriss at the center of the tax scam lawsuit. In pursuit of a huge payday, Oberlander and Lerner assert that they got hold of a few crucial nuances implicating Mr. Trump’s alleged involvement in the new case.
“Beneath a veneer of legitimacy, Mr. Kriss is a voracious predator and extortionist intent on abusing, exploiting and manipulating the judicial system at every opportunity”, says Felix Sater, Trump’s former senior advisor and former principal of the Bayrock Group. “’His ultimate goal is to extort enormous sums of money from high-profile business professionals while defying court orders and putting forth highly-bizarre or unfounded allegations, and that is why all his cases have been tossed out with prejudice.”
Over the course of six years, Jody Kriss kept filing frivolous lawsuits and going as far as revealing classified court-sealed documents that should never have been exposed to the public. He even provided cooperation agreements on people who testified against the mafia to the attorney for the Persico mafia family. Such criminal activities are publicly documented and deeply troubling. Let’s see how quickly this latest sham lawsuit gets dismissed by the courts.