New York's state attorney general is investigating whether Donald Trump illegally inflated the value of his business assets
One of the ANC brought more tough legal news for the president to end his family. A new court filing revealed that New York's attorney. General is investigating the trump organization for allegedly inflating the value of its assets to get loans state AJ Latisha James wants a judge to order the trump or to provide documents and compel testimony from the president's son Eric. As executive vice president. Now, according to this filing the younger trump abruptly cancelled and interview with the office. Last month, we should note this civil investigation, not a criminal case in a statement today their chief legal officer said, the company has done quote nothing wrong to that end, we welcome back to our broadcast Barbara, mcquade, veteran federal prosecutor, former US attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan. Counselor. It's good to see you I'd love your read on how much. Legal jeopardy how much real trouble the trump team could be in on this front Well, it depends on the facts Brian, but it could be very serious. We know that Michael Cohen testified before Congress about the trump organization propensity to deflate the value of assets and revenue when it came to filing tax returns, but inflating revenue and assets when it came time to seek loans, and so that is what Latisha James is exploring here and what's interesting about it is. Eric. Trump. Cancelling at the last minute and refusing to appear not wanting to invoke his fifth amendment rights but actually doing so. And so it does appear that they're concerned and have something to hide and when someone has something to hide, it makes prosecutors all the more eager to find out what's inside. What are the odds that we will see him go into testify? Can you just walk around and say now I'm not gonna I'm not gonNA come in there. No you can't. I think the odds are really quite high that he will have to show up. I think this is a stall tactic. We see this time and again I think it is the trump way. The way that he has built the real estate empire is to play hard ball and to assert frivolous legal claims. But everybody has a duty to show up and answer the questions. Now, that doesn't mean he can't assert his fifth amendment rights when asked particular questions but he can't do it in a blanket fashion. He can't say I'm not coming at all. He has to show up I mean she might ask questions like what's your name that's not protected by the Fifth Amendment Privilege but if there are particular questions then at that moment, he has to assert his right then but I think that is the the visual the Specter that he may be trying to avoid because that's when it looks politically perhaps to some like an assertion of the fifth, the Fifth Amendment might be an admission of guilt. And Barb we mentioned civil versus criminal. Is this a potential advantage to him and his dad that this is a civil not criminal matter. Well sometimes, yes. I mean, civil means that the penalties will be money damages and not sending someone to prison. So in that way I suppose civil makes people a little less fearful but in many ways when you are the prosecuting entity thinking about whether you want to proceed civilly or criminally can bring with it advantages and disadvantages. One of the great advantages of proceeding civilly is the burden of proof is much lower. It's only preponderance of the evidence as opposed to the higher guilt beyond a reasonable doubt that's necessary criminal case, and so in some ways, it could be more dangerous for the trump's to be facing a civil investigation because of different legal standard. Final question because Americans love being able to pick it things, they're not supposed to see. Can you manage expectations? There is no expectation correct that at the end of this case, or during this case, people get to take a look at the president's tax returns. It depends you're right. I don't know that we'll see the whole tax returns on display but if the attorney general is able to get her hands on the records, you may see allegations that come out of them in a complaint to civil complaint that would be filed here. So we may see excerpts, and if the case ever went to trial, those textures could end up being exhibits in court in. So in that way, they could be used in the day may come when we actually get to see them.