New York Attorney General Letitia James filed a lawsuit on Wednesday against Donald Trump, three of his children and the Trump Organization, alleging they were all involved in fraud to make the former president’s net worth appear higher to deceive lenders, insurers and tax authorities, according to CNN.
In addition to Trump, the lawsuit names his children Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump and Eric Trump as defendants. The suit also names Allen Weisselberg, former chief financial officer of the Trump Organization, and longtime executive Jeff McConney.
“These acts of fraud and misrepresentation grossly inflated Mr. Trump’s personal net worth as reported in the Statements by billions of dollars and conveyed false and misleading impressions to financial counterparties about how the Statements were prepared,” the suit reads. “Mr. Trump and the Trump Organization used these false and misleading Statements repeatedly and persistently to induce banks to lend money to the Trump Organization on more favorable terms than would otherwise have been available to the company, to satisfy continuing loan covenants, and to induce insurers to provide insurance coverage for higher limits and at lower premiums.”
James alleges that the widespread fraud included all parts of Trump’s businesses, including his properties and golf courses, and that state and federal laws may have been broken. She is asking for $250 million in allegedly fraudulent funds, a permanent ban on Trump and his named children from serving as business directors in the state of New York and revocation of the Trump Organization’s corporate certificate — which would effectively shut down their business operations in New York.
“These acts of fraud and misrepresentation were similar in nature, were committed by upper management at the Trump Organization as part of a common endeavor for each annual Statement, and were approved at the highest levels of the Trump Organization — including by Mr. Trump himself,” the lawsuit reads.
In a response to the suit, Trump’s attorney Alina Habba said in a statement to CNN: “Today’s filing is neither focused on the facts nor the law — rather, it is solely focused on advancing the Attorney General’s political agenda. It is abundantly clear that the Attorney General’s Office has exceeded its statutory authority by prying into transactions where absolutely no wrongdoing has taken place.”
The suit comes after FBI agents raided Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence last month and discovered boxes of classified documents. The Department of Justice is currently investigating possible crimes related to the removal of the documents, amid other investigations into the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.