A New York prosecutor obtained copies of Donald Trump’s tax records after the U.S. Supreme Court this week rejected the former president’s latest efforts to prevent their surrender.
The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office imposed a subpoena on Trump’s accounting firm within hours of the Supreme Court ruling on Monday and now has the documents in hand, office spokesperson Danny Frost said Thursday. .
District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. had been fighting for a year and a half for access to Trump’s tax records in a grand jury criminal investigation into his business dealings. The documents are protected by grand jury secrecy rules and should not be made public.
Vance, a Democrat, is leading a wide-ranging investigation that includes an examination of whether Trump or his companies lied about the value of assets to obtain favorable loan terms and tax benefits. The district attorney is also reviewing silenced payments made to women on Trump’s behalf.
Vance’s office issued a subpoena to Trump’s accounting firm, Mazars USA, in August 2019, requesting eight years of his tax returns and related documents.
Trump’s lawyers immediately went to court to block his enforcement, initially arguing that he was immune from investigation while he was president.
When the Supreme Court dismissed this 7-2 argument last July, Trump’s lawyers returned to a lower court and argued that the subpoena was issued in bad faith, too broad, could have been motivated by reasons policies and constitute harassment. An appeals courtrejected the argument and the Supreme Court refused on Monday to intervene.
In a three-word statement after the Supreme Court ruling on Monday, Vance said only, “The work continues.”
Trump called Vance’s investigation “a fishing expedition” and “a continuation of the witch hunt – the greatest witch hunt in history.”
Vance is leading the investigation with his general counsel, Carey Dunne, who has presented arguments on behalf of the office at various appeals court hearings. Vance recently hired former Mafia District Attorney Mark Pomerantz as a Special Assistant District Attorney to help with the investigation.
Vance, whose term expires at the end of the year, has not announced whether he will seek re-election, leaving questions about who will lead Trump-related prosecutions in the future.
The Vance subpoena demanded from Mazars USA not only the final versions of Trump’s tax returns, but also the drafts of those statements and “all financial statements, annual statements, periodic financial reports and financial statements. independent auditor reports ”held by the company.
Mazars did not oppose the subpoena and said in a statement at the time that he would “follow the legal procedure and fully comply with his legal obligations.”
Mazars’ assignment also covered commitment agreements defining the role of accountants in the creation of tax returns and financial statements; source documents providing accountants with raw financial data; and working papers and communications between the cabinet and Trump officials.
These would include communications showing how the raw data was analyzed and processed during the preparation of the files.
The New York Times separately obtained years of tax data from Trump and ran articles last year detailing some of his finances, including the fact that he had only paid $ 750 in federal income tax in 2017 and no income tax for 11 out of 18 years due to large losses.