The legal jeopardy faced by President Trump, his family, and his company just got a whole lot worse today as incoming New York State Attorney General Letitia James announced her plans to conduct a comprehensive investigation into “anyone” in the Trump circle who may have committed criminal actions, according to NBC News.
“We will use every area of the law to investigate President Trump and his business transactions and that of his family as well,” James said. “We want to investigate anyone in his orbit who has, in fact, violated the law,” she continued.
There is no shortage of things to investigate, with the newly-elected Democratic Attorney General providing a long list of items she will look into.
These include Trump’s New York real estate holdings which were the subject of an exhaustive expose by The New York Times earlier this year that alleged substantial tax fraud by the Trump family in transferring the assets of the family real estate empire from the president’s father to his children, among other dubious financial shenanigans.
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James also intends to look at the Trump Organization’s potential misuse of government subsidies in relation to the properties they own and continue the ongoing probe into the fraudulent conduct of the Trump Foundation charitable organization, which has been accused of misusing funds for non-charitable purposes such as the purchase of large portraits of Donald Trump and commemorative Tim Tebow football helmets.
Another area of inquiry will be a determination of whether Trump’s continued operation of his businesses in New York constitutes a violation of the emoluments clause of the U.S. Constitution.
According to the New York Law Journal, the Attorney General’s office is already looking into reports that “the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Manhattan substantially improved its business prospects earlier this year when the crown prince of Saudi Arabia booked a five-day stay that was reportedly enough to boost the hotel’s entire quarterly earnings.”
The incoming Attorney General of New York will also be examining the infamous June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with Russian officials attended by Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort.
James won the election for state Attorney General after campaigning on a promise to fight for a change to New York’s double jeopardy laws to allow her to prosecute anyone that President Trump may pardon for federal charges or convictions and whose crimes took place in New York. Current state law could be problematic right now, but James promises that changes are in the works with a bill amending the law to be passed very soon.
“I think within the first 100 days this bill will be passed,” she said, adding, “It is a priority because I have concerns with respect to the possibility that this administration might pardon some individuals who might face some criminal charges, but I do not want them to be immune from state charges.”
James makes no secret of her desire to see the president and his family fully investigated and prosecuted for any crimes that they may have committed.
“Taking on President Trump and looking at all of the violations of law I think is no match to what I have seen in my lifetime,” James said.
While some legal experts maintain that it is still an open question as to whether a sitting president can be charged with a state crime, remember that Trump is being investigated on multiple fronts on the federal level as well, including by the federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York who just sent his former attorney Michael Cohen to prison for three years as well as by Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team.
James praised the work of Mueller’s team, saying that they were “doing an excellent job.”
“I think he’s closing in on this president,” she said, “and his days are going to be coming to an end shortly.”
With prosecutors on both the state and federal level investigating the numerous misdeeds by Trump and his family that have already been publically reported, James’ assessment seems likely to be prophetic to the relief of the majority of the country that has had to suffer through this administration for nearly two years.
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