- The Washington Times - Monday, September 16, 2019

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office has subpoenaed eight years of President Trump’s personal and corporate tax returns as part of its investigation into hush money payments to two women who said they had affairs with the president.

New York prosecutors sent the subpoenas last month to Mazars USA, Mr. Trump’s accounting firm, according to multiple reports Monday.

Mazars USA said in a statement it will “respect the legal process and fully comply with its legal obligations.”

“We believe strongly in the ethical and professional rules and regulations that govern our industry, our work and our client interactions,” the statement said. “As a matter of firm policy and professional rules we do not comment on the work we conduct for our clients.”

Marc Mukasey, an attorney who represents the Trump organization, said of the Mazars subpoena, “we are evaluating and will respond as appropriate.”

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., a Democrat who was elected to the position in 2009, is investigating payoffs to adult film actress Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal. The payments were arranged by Mr. Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen prior to the presidential election.

Mr. Trump has always maintained the payments were not illegal, and if they did cross a line, it is because Cohen bungled the job.

Both women claim to have had affairs with Mr. Trump years before he ran for president. He has denied the allegations.

Mr. Vance also is investigating whether the Trump Organization falsified business records related to the payoffs.

Last week, it was reported that Mr. Vance’s prosecutors met with Cohen at the federal prison in Otisville, New York, where he is serving a three-year sentence for arranging the payments and other crimes.

Mr. Trump and The Trump Organization reimbursed Cohen for the $130,000 payment made to Ms. Daniels. Separately, the publisher of The National Enquirer paid $150,000 to Ms. McDougal for keeping quiet about her allegations.

Mr. Trump has been fighting efforts by several Democrat-led congressional committees to obtain his tax returns and other records that could give them a window into his finances.

Mr. Trump and three of his children filed a lawsuit in April seeking to block two House committees from getting records that his longtime lender, Deutsche Bank, has said includes tax returns. A federal appeals court indicated last month that it would take a hard look at the legality of the subpoenas after the president’s lawyers argued the House committee subpoenas were overly broad and unconstitutional.

In July, Mr. Trump sued to block the application of a new state law in New York that could allow a third House committee to obtain his state tax returns. In April, he and his company sued the chairman of the House oversight committee to block a subpoena issued to Mazars seeking financial statements, accounting records and other documents covering 2011 to 2018.

Meanwhile, New York Attorney General Letitia James is investigating whether Mr. Trump exaggerated his wealth to obtain loans. She issued subpoenas to Deutsche Bank and Investors Bank in March seeking loan applications and other records related to Trump real estate projects and his failed 2014 bid to buy the Buffalo Bills.

⦁ This article is based in part on wire service reports.

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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