Updated May 19, 2021 - Politics & Policy

New York AG announces criminal investigation into Trump Organization

Former U.S. President Donald Trump leaves Trump Tower in Manhattan on May 18, 2021 in New York City.

Former President Trump leaves Trump Tower in Manhattan, New York City, on Tuesday. Photo: James Devaney/GC Images

The New York attorney general's office said Tuesday night it has informed the Trump Organization that its investigation into the company "is no longer purely civil in nature" and is now also a criminal one.

Why it matters: The attorney general's office is now working with the Manhattan district attorney's office, which has been investigating the Trump Organization for potential bank, tax and insurance fraud.

Driving the news: New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) announced in 2019 that her office was investigating Trump Organization finances.

  • Her office filed a lawsuit last August to compel the organization to comply with subpoenas for an investigation into whether former President Trump and his company improperly inflated the value of its assets on financial statements.
  • Fabien Levy, a spokesperson for James, said in an emailed statement Tuesday: "We are now actively investigating the Trump Organization in a criminal capacity, along with the Manhattan DA." Levy declined to comment further.

What they're saying: Representatives for the Trump Organization did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment on the news, first reported by CNN.

The latest: Former President Trump said in a statement Wednesday, "These investigations have also been going on for years with members and associates of the Trump Organization being viciously attacked, harassed, and threatened, in order to say anything bad about the 45th President of the United States."

  • "This would include having to make up false stories," he claimed without providing evidence.
  • "Numerous documents, all prepared by large and prestigious law and accounting firms, have been examined, and many hours of testimony have been taken from many people, some of whom I have not seen in years."

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

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