Trump, Don Jr. and Ivanka scheduled for July depositions in N.Y. fraud probe

Trump, Don Jr. and Ivanka scheduled for July depositions in N.Y. fraud probe thumbnail

The New York Attorney General’s long-sought interviews with Donald Trump and two of his children, Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump, are scheduled for July 15.

Attorneys for the trio and New York Attorney Letitia James said in a court filing Wednesday that the two sides agreed to the date for sworn depositions in James’ wide-ranging civil fraud probe. The agreement stipulates that the depositions will conclude by the following week. They noted that the Trumps have until June 13 to appeal the court order that mandated the depositions.

On May 26, New York’s Appellate Division, First Judicial Department found that a lower court judge correctly ruled that the Trumps’ fear that their depositions might end up being used in a parallel criminal investigation did not shield them from subpoenas.

“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 appellate panel wrote.

Ron Fischetti, an attorney for Donald Trump, said that day they will “probably” appeal the decision to New York’s highest court, which is called the Court of Appeals. 

“Of course I disagree with their ruling,” Fischetti said.

The Trumps were challenging subpoenas sent in December seeking “testimony and documents in connection with an investigation into the valuation of properties owned or controlled by Donald J. Trump or the Trump Organization, or any matter which the Attorney General deems pertinent.”

Trump and his attorneys have repeatedly accused James of pursuing the investigation against him as a political ploy. 

But the appellate panel wrote that James’ office began its investigation appropriately after March 2019 congressional testimony by former Trump Organization attorney Michael Cohen raised questions about potentially “fraudulent financial statements.”

“(The Attorney General’s Office) began its investigation after public testimony of a senior corporate insider and reviewed significant volumes of evidence before issuing the subpoenas,” the judges wrote.

Attorneys for James’ office have indicated during multiple hearings in the last month that the investigation is nearing its conclusion, and that it may lead to an “enforcement action in the near future.” They have not elaborated on what enforcement might be.

Graham Kates

Graham Kates is an investigative reporter covering criminal justice, privacy issues and information security for CBS News Digital. Contact Graham at KatesG@cbsnews.com or grahamkates@protonmail.com

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