By Erik Larson
U.S. President Donald Trump’s son Eric was questioned under oath by the New York attorney general’s office, which is probing whether the family’s real estate company falsely reported property values to get loans or tax benefits, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Eric Trump, an executive vice president at the Trump Organization, was deposed on Monday via video-conference after initially refusing to provide testimony and then unsuccessfully trying to postpone it until after the November election, said the person, who declined to be identified discussing the matter.
The probe by New York Attorney General Letitia James is focusing on an obscure property called Seven Springs on 212 acres outside New York City, as well as transactions involving the Trump-owned 40 Wall Street building in lower Manhattan, a Los Angeles golf club and the Trump International Hotel and Tower Chicago.
Michael Cohen, the president’s former personal lawyer and fixer who has become a vocal critic, has said his ex-boss inflated the value of his assets “when it suited him” and deflated the same figures to reduce his tax liability.
The president’s son was ordered by New York state court Justice Arthur Engoron to sit for the deposition by Oct. 7.
Trump’s company, which turned over thousands of documents to James, a Democrat, has accused her of weaponizing the investigation political purposes ahead of the election. The probe, however, isn’t likely to be finished or result in any public findings before Nov. 3.