Two separate fraud investigations into President Donald Trump and his businesses in New York State have expanded to include tax write-offs for consulting fees, some of which appear to have been paid to Ivanka Trump.
The news comes after a New York Times report which revealed Trump paid nominal taxes — paying federal tax only 10 out of the 15 previous years.
The report that Trump wrote off $26 million in unexplained “consulting fees” between 2010 and 2018 and that approximately $750,000 of it went to Ivanka, according to a disclosure filed by her when she joined the White House which showed she was paid for “consulting company she co-owned, totaling $747,622, that exactly matched consulting fees claimed as tax deductions by the Trump Organization for hotel projects in Vancouver and Hawaii.”
The two inquiries in New York — one criminal investigation led by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance and one civil probe led by State Attorney General Letitia James — both issued subpoenas related to the consulting fees, the Times reported Thursday.
However, there is no indication that Ivanka is the focus of either probe, but it does indicate the legal battles that Trump and his family may face after leaving the White House.
Alan Garten, a Trump Organization lawyer, said in a statement that “this is just the latest fishing expedition in an ongoing attempt to harass the company.”
“Everything was done in strict compliance with applicable law and under the advice of counsel and tax experts,” he said. “All applicable taxes were paid and no party received any undue benefit.”
The president has called the tax investigation “the greatest witch hunt in history.”
Both probes have been going on for some time, with Vance focusing on potential campaign finance violations related to hush-money payments made to women Trump allegedly had affairs with and James focusing on the Trump Organization’s business practices and accusations of inflating assets to secure loans. James could make a criminal referral to Vance if she found evidence of criminal activity.