Despite the efforts of Donald Trump’s lawyers to say the otherwise, New York Attorney General Letitia James says her office has “substantial” evidence to proceed with its investigation into the former president.
James’ office pushed back against Trump’s legal team’s bid to stop the three-year inquiry into his namesake business, saying they’d collected a “substantial amount of evidence” that could support an enforcement action against the Trump Organization.
“There’s clearly been a substantial amount of evidence amassed that could support the filing of an enforcement proceeding, although the final determination on filing that proceeding has yet to be made,” Andrew Amer, a New York assistant attorney general, said during an hourlong court hearing Friday in Albany, New York.
Attorney General Letitia James of New York had previously said that her office “uncovered significant evidence that suggests Donald J. Trump and the Trump Organization falsely and fraudulently valued multiple assets and misrepresented those values to financial institutions for economic benefit.”
Amer’s remarks, attesting to the scope of the evidence against Trump, came as the attorney general’s office defended the investigation against a legal attack from the former president in federal court.
For his part, Trump sued James last year in a bid to halt her office’s civil inquiry, arguing that the New York attorney general’s past comments showed the investigation was “politically motivated.” In court papers and his own public statements, Trump has called her investigation yet another in the series of “witch hunts” directed at the former president.
Arguing in Albany, Amer said the investigation commenced not out of political animus but in response to the congressional testimony of Michael Cohen, the former Trump lawyer, and fixer who called the former president a “con man” and a “cheat” in his 2019 appearance before the House Committee on Oversight and Reform.
Amer said it was “totally appropriate” for James’ office to have opened the investigation on those grounds. He said that the volume of evidence, combined with the state judge’s past rulings, “really shuts the door” on Trump’s arguments for ending the investigation.