What next in Donald Trump's New York subpoena saga
A New York appeals court refused former President Donald Trump's request to avoid a deposition
Trump and his two eldest children are now required to testify
Trump paid a $110,000 fine last week after being held in contempt of court for failing to reply to another subpoena
A panel of justices in the state Appellate Division unanimously refused an attempt by Trump and his two eldest children, Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump, to prevent subpoenas from Attorney General Letitia James' office for their testimony. All three have held senior positions within the Trump Organisation.
They are now required to testify in the ongoing probe.
Lawyers representing the Trumps argued that the subpoenas should be dismissed because James' investigation is politically motivated and intended to fuel the Manhattan district attorney's office's ongoing criminal investigation into the company.
The appeals court sided with James' office, concluding that her civil tax fraud inquiry was "lawfully initiated at its outset and well founded."
The Appellate Division is the state's second-highest court. The Trumps could file an appeal with the state's highest court, the Court of Appeals, but they would require special permission.
"Once again, the courts have ruled that Donald Trump must comply with our lawful investigation into his financial dealings,” James asserted in a statement. “We will continue to follow the facts of this case and ensure that no one can evade the law.”
A lawyer for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
James' agency is considering filing a civil suit against the Trump Organization for allegedly falsifying financial accounts.
Her agency said in court filings that it "uncovered substantial evidence establishing numerous misrepresentations in Mr. Trump’s financial statements provided to banks, insurers, and the Internal Revenue Service." The corporation has denied any wrongdoing, and the former president has referred to James' investigation as a "witch hunt."
James' office wants to question Trump about several of those assertions, which she claims were exaggerated by hundreds of millions of dollars and approved by Trump. Investigators intend to question Ivanka Trump, a previous executive at the company, as well as Trump Jr., the company's current executive vice president, about the company's financial operations.
Trump paid a $110,000 fine last week after being held in contempt of court for failing to reply to another subpoena from the attorney general's office.
Trump's lawyer, Alina Habba, argued that the contempt decision should be overturned since Trump conducted an exhaustive search and was unable to locate any of the documents and material requested by James. In court documents this week, James' office stated that it is still awaiting information from Trump's former executive assistant.