Trump must testify in NY probe according to appeals court ruling

Former President Trump is being forced to testify in the New York attorney general’s investigation into his business practices according to a ruling by a state appeals court on Thursday, according to The Hill.

Trump challenged the subpoenas for himself and two of his adult children, who are also being compelled to testify, but the four-judge panel for the Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court decided unanimously that Trump’s appeal be dismissed.

“OAG began its investigation after public testimony of a senior corporate insider and reviewed significant volumes of evidence before issuing the subpoenas,” the panel wrote in its four-page decision, using an acronym for the Office of Attorney General.

“Appellants have not identified any similarly implicated corporation that was not investigated or any executives of such a corporation who were not deposed. Therefore, appellants have failed to demonstrate that they were treated differently from any similarly situated persons.”

The former president and Donald Trump Jr., who is currently an executive vice president at the family’s company, and Ivanka Trump, who stepped down as an officer in 2017, are all part of the investigation being conducted by New York Attorney General Letitia James (D), who praised the decision:

“Once again, the courts have ruled that Donald Trump must comply with our lawful investigation into his financial dealings,” James said in a statement. “We will continue to follow the facts of this case and ensure that no one can evade the law.”

Trump’s attorney, Allen Futerfas, was not immediately available for comment on the decision, but James has said the investigation found evidence that the Trump Organization fraudulently misrepresented the value of its assets prior to Trump’s election to the White House, according to The Hill:

“The ruling is not certain to bring an end to Trump’s legal battles against James. He could still appeal the decision to the New York Court of Appeals, the state’s highest judicial body. And Trump is also asking a federal judge to block James from carrying out the investigation, though it’s not clear when that lawsuit might be decided.

“Trump had appealed a lower court ruling ordering him to provide testimony and documents to James’s office. Judge Arthur Engoron found Trump in contempt earlier this month for failing to comply with the order to provide business records to the investigators.”