Donald Trump and his offspring are most certainly sweating the Special Counsel investigation into their increasingly obvious collusion with the Russians, the NRA and a cast of bad characters like Roger Stone, but their real nightmare is about to begin and it has nothing to do with Robert Mueller. No, no. The worst fears of the Trump family crime organization are going to be realized when Leticia James is sworn in as New York’s Attorney General. Unlike her predecessors, she is not going to look the other way. In fact, she’s coming at them with all that she has—and she plans to leave no stone unturned. In an interview with NBC News, James said, “We will use every area of the law to investigate President Trump and his business transactions and that of his family as well.”
Leticia James outlined just a few of the areas they intend to investigate immediately, including exactly how Donald Trump got $413 million from his father in sketchy real estate transactions and tax schemes and much more.
- Any potential illegalities involving Trump’s real estate holdings in New York, highlighting a New York Times investigation published in October into the president’s finances.
- The June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with a Russian official.
- Examine government subsidies Trump received, which were also the subject of Times investigative work.
- Whether he is in violation of the emoluments clause in the U.S. Constitution through his New York businesses.
- Continue to probe the Trump Foundation.
In fact, James went even further, saying she would “investigate anyone in his orbit who has, in fact, violated the law.” Considering how many criminals Donald Trump, his family and his associates interact with on a regular basis, Leticia James is about a bring a world of hurt to Trump Tower. In 2012, then New York City District Attorney Cy Vance’s office was on the verge of bringing felony fraud charges against Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump for deceiving investors, but that investigation disappeared like a fart in the wind after Vance received a $25,000 donation from Trump attorney Marc Kasowitz. The New Yorker revealed details of the curious decision from Cy Vance to drop the case, overruling his own attorneys from the Major Economic Crimes Bureau.
On May 16, 2012, Kasowitz visited Vance’s office at One Hogan Place, in downtown Manhattan—a faded edifice made famous by the television show “Law & Order.” Dan Alonso, the Chief Assistant District Attorney, and Adam Kaufmann, the chief of the investigative division, were also at the meeting, but no one from the Major Economic Crimes Bureau attended. Kasowitz did not introduce any new arguments or facts during his session. He simply repeated the arguments that the other defense lawyers had been making for months.
Ultimately, Vance overruled his own prosecutors. Three months after the meeting, he told them to drop the case. Kasowitz subsequently boasted to colleagues about representing the Trump children, according to two people. He said that the case was “really dangerous,” one person said, and that it was “amazing I got them off.” (Kasowitz denied making such a statement.)
Leticia James’ promise to investigate others in the Trump orbit is terrible news for Michael Cohen in particular. Last week there were two sentencing memos filed with respect to Michael Cohen—one from Robert Mueller asking for leniency because of Cohen’s cooperation and one from the Southern District of New York, which essentially asked to throw the book at Cohen because he was not fully cooperating. There’s a reason he wasn’t fully cooperating—Michael Cohen’s family has long, deep ties to Russian mobsters and full cooperation means throwing them into the investigative wood chipper. Cohen himself was a part owner of the El Caribe Country Club in Brooklyn, a well-known hangout and preferred event venue of Russian mob figures, most notably Cohen’s father-in-law, Fima Shusterman. More from Rolling Stone:
I spoke to two former federal investigators who told me Cohen was introduced to Donald Trump by his father-in-law, Fima Shusterman, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Ukraine who arrived in the U.S. in 1975. Shusterman was in the garment business and owned a fleet of taxicabs with his partners, Shalva Botier and Edward Zubok – all three men were convicted of a money-laundering related offense in 1993. “Fima may have been a (possibly silent) business partner with Trump, perhaps even used as a conduit for Russian investors in Trump properties and other ventures,” a former federal investigator told me. “Cohen, who married into the family, was given the job with the Trump Org as a favor to Shusterman.” (“Untrue,” Cohen told me. “Your source is creating fake news.”)
No doubt James will look into Michael Cohen’s real estate magic, like that time he sold four buildings on the same day for $32 million in CASH, tripling what he paid for the properties only three years prior. It’s almost Trumpian! Reminiscent of Donald Trump’s real estate magic when he managed to sell a Florida mansion to Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev for nearly $100 million after buying the property for $40 million only four years earlier. Cohen and Trump had a real knack for doubling or tripling their money through real estate transactions with foreigners, particularly Russians. What. A. Coincidence.
To help build her extensive legal department ahead of these numerous investigations, she’s turned to former U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch to identify and recruit experts related to these investigations.
Unlike federal convictions, Donald Trump does not have the ability to pardon anyone convicted in state crimes. Nor does he have the ability to throw a monkeywrench in New York investigations the way he is attempting to do with the Department of Justice and the Special Counsel investigation. New York state law currently says the state cannot pursue state charges for federal crimes that have already been pardoned, but James says she expects the New York legislature to pass a bill changing that law in the next 100 days.
In short, the Trump family crime organization is in for a world of pain that will last long after Donald Trump leaves the White House.
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.