Eric Trump’s Lawyer Abandons Ship In NY Tax Fraud Case

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A lawyer for Eric Trump in a civil case brought by New York state Attorney General Letitia James alleging fraud at the Trump family business has exited from the case. That lawyer, right-wing ally Marc Mukasey, formally notified a New York judge that he was withdrawing from the case on September 14. There’s no immediately apparent explanation for Mukasey’s departure, although it unfolded “one day after a judge’s order to seal a stipulation between the parties was filed,” as Forbes explains. Attorney Alan Futerfas is still representing Eric in this case.

Previously, Mukasey had represented Eric Trump in these proceedings since their start in August of last year. At that time, James was seeking to compel Eric to appear for testimony as part of an investigation by her office into financial issues at the Trump family business. (Eventually, Eric did provide testimony.) Specifically, James had been investigating whether the Trump Organization had artificially adjusted valuations of certain assets in order to obtain benefits like more favorable loan terms and tax breaks. More recently, criminal charges were filed against the Trump Organization and its chief financial officer, Alan Weisselberg, over a separate, years-long scheme to dole out pricey benefits at the company without paying the required taxes.

Last August — before Eric provided the testimony in question — James proclaimed her commitment to continuing with her investigation, no matter the obstruction from Trump’s side. As she put it at the time:

‘Nothing will stop us from following the facts and the law, wherever they may lead. For months, the Trump Organization has made baseless claims in an effort to shield evidence from a lawful investigation into its financial dealings. They have stalled, withheld documents, and instructed witnesses, including Eric Trump, to refuse to answer questions under oath. That’s why we’ve filed a motion to compel the Trump Organization to comply with our office’s lawful subpoenas for documents and testimony. These questions will be answered and the truth will be uncovered, because no one is above the law.’

Later on, James joined forces with Manhattan-area District Attorney Cy Vance, who had been conducting a criminal investigation of a similar trove of issues. Unsurprisingly, the Trumps have feverishly complained about investigations targeting them at essentially every step of the way, but investigators have nonetheless scored some wins. Manhattan prosecutors, for instance, successfully obtained years of Trump’s tax returns after the ex-president’s efforts to shield the materials failed. Although criminal charges have already been filed, underlying investigations into these matters remain ongoing.