Nov. 13 (UPI) -- Donald Trump Jr. testified for roughly three hours as the first witness for the defense Monday in the Trump Organization's New York civil fraud trial.
His testimony included a presentation detailing each property, as he said the future of the company will depend on next year's presidential election.
"I guess a lot of that depends on what happens next November," Trump Jr. said near the end of his testimony. "We'll probably be put on hold for a little while and sued into oblivion for the foreseeable future."
Trump Jr.'s testimony Monday included a lengthy, detailed history of the Trump Organization and its properties, which was permitted by Judge Arthur Engoron in the fraud trial against himself, his brother Eric Trump, and his father, former President Donald Trump.
Over the objection of prosecutors, Engoron allowed for the PowerPoint presentation with Trump Jr. on the stand.
"Let this stuff come in. I also find it interesting. Objection is overruled. Let him go ahead and talk about how great the Trump Organization is," Engoron said.
Trump attorney Cliff Robert questioned Trump Jr. about the Trump International Hotel at the Old Post Office in Washington, D.C.
Trump Jr. called the building "a war zone" before the General Services Administration awarded the project to the Trump Organization.
"You'd be disappointed that you could let a building that spectacular get that run down," he said.
During his testimony, Trump Jr. said the Trump Organization employed about 1,000 people in New York -- without counting subcontractors on building projects -- between 2011 and 2021, and said the company paid tens of millions of dollars in taxes during that time.
"I don't know specifically, but it's a big number," Trump Jr. added.
When prosecutors objected to the praise Trump heaped upon the properties during his more than two-hour presentation, calling much of it hearsay, he pushed back.
"I'm not speculating, these are things that actually happened," Trump Jr. said, turning toward Engoron, who allowed the presentation to continue.
Trump Jr. discussed how his father was a real estate "visionary" who took over dilapidated buildings and used his skills to renovate them into some of the best in city.
"He's an artist. He sees the things that other people don't," Trump Jr. said.
During his testimony, Trump Jr. also blasted Engoron's valuation that Mar-a-Lago was worth between $18 and $28 million.
"You couldn't build that atrium for $18 million today," Trump Jr. said, while showing a photo of a section of the building's historic atrium.
During questioning earlier in the trial by the attorney general's office, Trump Jr., claimed he was not familiar with any of the property valuations on the company's financial statements.
Trump Jr. said that when his father became president, his brother Eric took over the day-to-day operation of the Trump Organization while he worked on the "bigger picture" deals. Ivanka Trump went to Washington to work beside her father in his administration and Trump Jr. stressed that the ex-president was not involved in the business himself.
He said that eventually the decision was made to not pursue any new big deals while their father was in the Oval Office, something he now believes was "a mistake."
"[Everyone claimed] we were still doing that, so it didn't really matter and we got no credit for it," Trump Jr. said.
He said before the Trump presidency, he and his siblings were all running their own projects within the organization.
"We worked collectively but each one of us had our collective buckets." Trump Jr. said.
New York Attorney General Letitia James accuses the family of illegally inflating assets to get better loan terms.
The prosecution rested last week after questioning more than 20 witnesses. Judge Engoron had ruled the Trumps used fraudulent documents to conduct business, in a partial summary ruling that they are appealing.
Trump Jr. had testified that he relied on the external accountants who prepared the documents while leading the revocable trust his father used to guard against business conflicts while serving as president.
The Trumps -- the ex-president and his oldest sons Donald Jr. and Eric -- along with some executives of the Trump Organization, have denied wrongdoing in the case and have deflected blame for falsified documents to those working for them.
Last week, the former president's daughter Ivanka Trump testified that she was not involved in the financial statements tied to the fraud allegations.
The former president has repeatedly clashed with Engoron, who fined Trump twice for remarks outside court about the trial. The former president called the judge a "fraud" during his testimony.
Trump Jr.'s testimony is the start of a list of defense witnesses before returning to the prosecution for any rebuttal testimony.