Sat | Sep 19, 2020

Trump lawyers make final pitch to block tax record release

Published:Monday | August 10, 2020 | 5:18 PM
President Donald Trump walks to his car after arriving in Southampton, New York, on Marine One, Saturday, August 8, 2020. Trump is attending two fundraisers during his visit to the Hamptons. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

NEW YORK (AP) — President Donald Trump’s lawyers made a final pitch Monday to block a New York prosecutor from getting his tax records, saying the Democrat was still “fishing for a way to justify his harassment of the President.”

The lawyers made their written submission to a federal judge who last year refused to throw out the subpoena Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance issued to Trump’s accountant in a criminal probe.

US District Judge Victor Marrero’s ruling was upheld last month by the US Supreme Court, though the high court returned to the case to him, saying Trump’s lawyers were entitled to challenge the subpoena in the same manner as anyone else.

The president responded by arguing through his attorneys that the subpoena was issued in bad faith, might have been politically motivated and amounted to harassment of the president, especially since the wording mimicked the language in congressional subpoenas.

Vance’s attorneys said they were entitled to extensive records to aid a “complex financial investigation” and they cited in their papers public reports of “extensive and protracted criminal conduct at the Trump Organization.”

Trump’s lawyers said Monday that the request for tax records dating back to 2011 was retaliatory after the president’s company, the Trump Organization, disputed the scope of a subpoena seeking records from June 1, 2015, through Sept 20, 2018.

That time span pertains to an investigation related to payoffs to two women, including a porn actress, to keep them quiet during the 2016 presidential campaign about alleged extramarital affairs with Trump. Trump has denied the affairs.

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