Donald Trump ordered to testify under oath about business practices

A court ruled that ex-President Donald Trump must answer questions under oath in a New York civil probe (Picture: AP)

Former President has lost an appeal effort and must answer questions under oath in a New York civil investigation into his company, a court has ruled.

A state appeals court on Thursday upheld Manhattan Judge Arthur Engoron’s February ruling enforcing subpoenas for Trump and his two oldest children to give depositions in New York Attorney General Letitia James’ probe.

Trump filed an appeal and tried to overturn the decision. The ex-president’s attorneys argued that Trump, Donald Trump Jr and Ivanka Trump testifying would violate their constitutional rights because their responses could be incorporated in a separate, criminal probe by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

However, the four-judge panel in the state trial court’s appellate division wrote that ‘the existence of a criminal investigation does not preclude civil discovery of related facts, at which a party may exercise the privilege against self-incrimination’.

The decision states: ‘The political campaign and other public statements made by OAG about appellants do not support the claim that OAG initiated, or is using, the subpoenas in this civil investigation to obtain testimony solely for use in a criminal proceeding or in a manner that would otherwise improperly undermine appellants’ privilege against self-incrimination.’

James has said that her probe has found evidence that the Trump Organization provided ‘fraudulent and misleading’ valuations of his properties and assets in order to obtain tax breaks and favorable loans.

‘Once again, the courts have ruled that Donald Trump must comply with our lawful investigation into his financial dealings,’ James stated on Thursday. ‘We will continue to follow the facts of this case and ensure that no one can evade the law.’

The Trumps, who have repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, have ignored all subpoenas issued for them in James’ probe. They have the option of appealing the ruling in the Court of Appeals, the highest court in the state.



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