Eric Trump Agrees to Comply With New York AG’s Probe After Election

September 18, 2020 Updated: September 18, 2020

Eric Trump, President Donald Trump’s son, on Sept. 17 agreed to undergo questioning in connection with a financial investigation by a New York State’s attorney general into the president and the Trump Organization, but said he will comply after November’s election.

Letitia James, the state’s attorney general, announced the probe on Aug. 24 into whether the president and the Trump Organization had “improperly” manipulated the value of his assets on annual financial statements in order to secure loans and obtain tax benefits.

Attorneys for Eric Trump, the Trump Organization’s executive vice president, proposed four dates that he could be questioned in the inquiry, beginning on Nov. 19—some two weeks after the presidential election.

They said his questioning would take place after the election due to his “extreme” travel commitments and to avoid “any appearance of politicizing the investigatory process.”

“Eric Trump has been, and continues to be, willing to appear pursuant to a subpoena,” the lawyers said.

“While we cannot comment on the particular steps we’re taking on specific litigation, we won’t allow any entity or individual to dictate how our investigation will proceed or allow anyone to evade a lawful subpoena,” a spokesman for James said in a statement.

James last month said she had been probing the allegations since 2019 after Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen testified before Congress. The investigation has remained confidential for months.

New York State Attorney General Letitia James
New York State Attorney General Letitia James takes a question at a news conference in New York, on Aug. 6, 2020. (Kathy Willens/AP Photo)

She said that the Trump Organization and other respondents have already acknowledged the investigation and has already produced “significant amounts of responsive information,” however, the parties have come to a disagreement on a narrow set of issues that have reached an impasse.

James is also seeking other respondents to comply with several subpoenas, which she said would provide her office with thousands of documents and testimony from witnesses about properties and transactions of the company.

A spokesperson for the Trump Organization denied the allegations to The Epoch Times in an emailed statement last month, saying that the company “has done nothing wrong.”

“This is simply a discovery dispute over documents and the like. The Trump Organization has done nothing wrong and, as the motion papers clearly state, the NYAG has made no determination that anything was improper or that any action is forthcoming,” the statement said.

“While we have tried to cooperate in good faith with the investigation at every turn, the NYAG’s continued harassment of the company as we approach the election (and filing of this motion on the first day of the Republican National Convention) once again confirms that this investigation is all about politics.”

The Trump Organization added that it will respond to the motion as appropriate.

Epoch Times Photo
The Trump Tower in Manhattan, New York City, on Dec. 10, 2018. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Four Trump Organization properties are being probed, including the Seven Spring Estate in Westchester County, New York; 40 Wall Street in Manhattan; the Trump International Hotel and Tower Chicago, and Trump National Golf Club in Los Angeles.

The state attorney general last month provided some details about the investigation saying that one particular focus, for example, is whether the Trump Organization and its agents had manipulated the value of the Seven Springs Estate.

“Valuations of Seven Springs were used to claim an apparent $21.1 million tax deduction for donating a conservation easement on the property in tax year 2015, and in submissions to financial institutions as a component of Mr. Trump’s net worth,” the memo stated.

James added that the investigation has not concluded and that the attorney general has not reached a determination on whether the Trump Organization had violated any laws.

A hearing in the case has been scheduled in a New York state court in Manhattan on Sept. 23.

Janita Kan and Reuters contributed to this report.