New York State joins Manhattan district attorney Cyrus Vance in launching ‘active’ inquiry into former president’s company. Donald Trump is now facing three separate criminal investigations into his business activities, and those of his family members.
On Tuesday night Letitia James’ office said it was joining a sweeping criminal investigation being conducted in parallel by Manhattan’s district attorney. The move, communicated in a recent letter from James to the Trump Organization, significantly raises the stakes for the former president, who now faces three separate criminal investigations.
Trump is accused of falsely manipulating the value of Trump Organization properties in order to secure bank loans and lucrative tax breaks, tax and insurance fraud and falsification of business records.
“We have informed the Trump Organization that our investigation … is no longer purely civil in nature,” James’s office said. “We are now actively investigating the Trump Organization in a criminal capacity, along with the Manhattan DA. We have no additional comment at this time.”
The Trump Organization has yet to comment. But it has previously dismissed the investigations as politically motivated witch-hunts and pointed out that James and Vance are both Democrats.
Vance’s investigation began after it emerged that Trump’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen paid hush money to silence two women in the months before the 2016 US presidential election. Both said they had had affairs with Trump. James opened her inquiry after Cohen told Congress that Trump’s financial statements were deliberately manipulated in order to save money on loans and to reduce his real estate tax bills.
Cohen, who once said he would take a bullet for Trump, pleaded guilty in 2018 to campaign finance violations and other crimes. He is currently serving a three-year sentence under home confinement.
“As more documents are reviewed by the NYAG and NYDA, it appears that the troubles for Donald Trump just keep on coming. Soon enough, Donald and associates will be held responsible for their actions,” Cohen said late on Tuesday.
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