The judges ruled: “There is no indication that these are but ordinary documents usually relevant to a grand jury investigation into possible financial or institutional misconduct.”
“We have considered all the president’s remaining allegations on the appeal and found any basis for the cassation,” the ruling stated. A panel of three judges rejected the president’s case with bias, meaning he could not revive it on this basis.
Tax returns and other financial records will not be delivered immediately to the Public Prosecution Office. The Court of Appeals suspended enforcement of the subpoena based on a joint agreement between the Manhattan County attorney and the President’s legal team. Under this arrangement, there is a 12-day briefing schedule for Trump to ask the Supreme Court to suspend the ruling regarding the execution of the subpoena. The timeline indicates that the attorney general is unlikely to obtain the records before the presidential election.
Jay Sekulo, the president’s attorney, said Wednesday that they will ask the Supreme Court to suspend the ruling. A Manhattan District Attorney’s spokesman Cyrus Vance declined to comment. A representative of the Ministry of Justice said it was in the process of reviewing the ruling.
The lawsuit was the latest attempt by the president to try to block the recall of Mazars USA after a Supreme Court ruling this summer that said the president did not have broad immunity from a grand jury summon. After this ruling, the President’s attorneys amended their case against the Prosecutor, claiming that the subpoena was too broad and issued in bad faith in an attempt to harass the President. US District Judge Victor Marrero dismissed these arguments last month, and Trump’s lawyers have appealed.
Trump’s attorneys have argued that the attorney general’s investigation was limited to cash payments made by Michael Cohen to cover up Trump’s alleged affairs and that the subpoena, seeking personal and business records dating back to January 2011, was too broad. Trump’s attorneys argued that the attorney general’s investigation was limited based on a previous subpoena it sent to the Trump Organization that only referred to silent money payments.
The appeals court rejected Trump’s argument, saying it was “nothing more than an unreasonable speculation.”
“It is not reasonable to conclude that a single subpoena will determine the full scope of the grand jury’s investigations, particularly in complex financial investigations,” the judges wrote.
In court filings, the OTP said the investigation was much broader than those payments and suggested it might include tax fraud, bank fraud and insurance fraud.
And expecting that the appeals court would reject the president’s legal arguments, the attorneys of both sides agreed to postpone the execution of the subpoena to allow the president’s lawyer to ask the Supreme Court to “suspend” the ruling.
Under the agreement, which was upheld by the Court of Appeal, the president’s lawyer has five calendar days to submit a request to the Supreme Court to request that the subpoena be suspended. The Prosecutor will have five days to submit a summary of the response, and the President’s attorney will have two days to respond.
Five judges of the Supreme Court are required to agree to grant residency. The court currently has eight members following the death of Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Republicans in Congress are pressing to confirm Trump’s candidate, Amy Connie Barrett, to take the seat in the next few weeks.
If the Supreme Court does not approve the moratorium, Trump’s attorneys will likely ask the court to hear the case on the merits, but at this point the subpoena will be executed and the documents handed over to the investigators. If the court grants the moratorium, the legal battle over the subpoena will continue until after the election.
CNN’s Evan Perez and Arian de Vogue contributed to this report.
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