Intransigence! Subterfuge! NY AG Letitia James Blames Donald Trump Again for ‘Dodging’ His Subpoenas

  • NY AG Letitia James accuses Donald Trump of “intransigence” and “subterfuge” in a new court filing.
  • This latest volley in their war of words comes days after Trump called James a failure and a “racist”.
  • James accuses Trump of dodging subpoenas; their lawyers face off in Manhattan on Monday.

Intransigence! Subterfuge! Procedural know-how!

These are some of the choice descriptors an increasingly impatient-sounding New York attorney general, Letitia James, used in a court filing Friday night to describe how Donald Trump handled his subpoenas.

“The Court should put an end to Mr. Trump’s intransigence and subterfuge,” his lawyers wrote to a Manhattan judge, using some of the most impassioned language yet in their two-year quest for Mr. Trump’s personal business records. the former president.

Lawyers for the AG and Trump – who insists he has already handed over everything he has – will argue the matter face to face in court at 10 a.m. Monday morning. James asked state Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron to fine Trump $10,000 a day for overriding the March 31 documents deadline.

So far, however, their sometimes vitriolic war of words has been waged in court filings and tweeted taunts.

A few good Easter words

“The Racist and Highly Partisan New York State Attorney General”, Trump called James on Monday. He threw around similar names sulkily “Happy Easter” message to the Attorney General the day before.

“May she stay healthy,” the former president said at Easter, “despite the fact that she will continue to drive business out of New York while maintaining crime, death and destruction in New York !”

On Monday night, Trump doubled down, calling James’ $10,000-a-day fine threat a blatant “publicity stunt” in his own court documents filed by Alina Habba, his lawyer.

Habba argued that the 10 personal business documents the Trump Organization has already handed over are all he has for James. The company conducted a “diligent” search, Habba said. Even if there were additional documents, they would be held by the Trump Organization, she said. It would be up to them to hand them over, she said, not Trump.

And the Trump Organization has already turned over some 900,000 documents, Trump’s lawyers argued, a figure that is not disputed.

James wants Trump to be ‘constrained’

But in documents signed by GA special counsel Andrew Amer, James countered Friday night that the Trump Organization’s compliance with his subpoenas was incomplete and “plagued by its own delays.”

The filing asks the judge to hold Trump in contempt of court and set an ‘appropriate’ fine – the $10,000-a-day figure is a suggestion – so he can be ‘forced into full compliance’ with the demands of the court. ‘AG.

Compliance would mean “performing searches of all electronic devices and other electronically stored repositories,” the filing says, “including searches of Mr. Trump’s previously identified mobile devices.”

A court-ordered search by document search firm HaystackID sheds no light on these devices, the filing says.

“According to HaystackID’s April 18, 2022 report, there are no ongoing efforts to search for responsive material from Mr. Trump’s electronic devices,” the filing said. “The HaystackID report identifies two cellphones for Mr. Trump, but says it is ‘unknown’ whether the devices were collected for discovery.”

The filing continues, “The report also indicates that Mr. Trump’s longtime executive assistant, Rhona Graff, has a laptop and

desktop computer

located in Trump Tower, but neither was collected for discovery, so they were not excavated either.”

Ten documents are not enough

Compliance would also mean Trump “searching all relevant physical locations” — that is, wherever his personal business records are, the filing says.

The former president must hand over more than “the 10 paltry documents Mr. Trump has already produced by the Trump Organization.”

That includes everything in Trump’s “chron” files, the filing says. They are believed to be paper documents stored in chronological order after passing through Trump’s office, as described in James’ office in a deposition last summer by Trump Organization attorney Alan Garten.

Also missing are “Mr. Trump’s paper calendars,” filing notes, as well as “files located in cabinets outside Mr. Trump’s office,” and in “the storage room near Mr. Trump’s office.” trump,” and in “filing cabinets on the 25th and 26th floors,” the filing adds — apparent references to the Trump Organization’s headquarters in Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan.

The filing finally asks Trump to identify “all responsive documents that have been destroyed or are no longer available with details of how and why they were not retained.”

A three-year effort

James has been investigating Trump’s Manhattan-based international real estate business for three years now.

The investigation is civil in nature and examines what James describes as widespread and self-serving “inaccuracies” in how Trump has valued his properties when applying for loans and tax breaks over the years.

A civil investigation could lead to a lawsuit that seeks fines and even the dissolution of his company, as James successfully sought with the Trump Foundation and unsuccessfully against the NRA.

James has been asking for Trump’s personal business records for two years, first through a general subpoena to the Trump Organization and, since December, through a subpoena she issued directly to Trump.

James and the Trumps are simultaneously vying for additional subpoenas demanding that Donald Trump, Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr. sit for depositions in his civil investigation. That case will be heard in a Manhattan appeals court on May 11.

James is also leading a separate criminal investigation into Trump’s affairs, an investigation that has so far proceeded without the insights into activity provided by public litigation.

A parallel criminal investigation into Trump’s cases, by the Manhattan district attorney’s office, is “underway”, new prosecutor Alvin Bragg said, despite the resignation in February of his two lead prosecutors after Bragg’s decision not to seek Trump’s indictment.

Sources told Insider that under Bragg’s predecessor, Cyrus Vance, the investigation focused primarily on alleged financial wrongdoing by Trump, and little else was put in place to prosecute Trump. other defendants.

But the Trump Organization and its former chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, remain under indictment over a payroll tax scheme; they have pleaded not guilty and are currently asking a judge to throw out the case.

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