Wednesday, 18 September, 2019

Congress Subpoenas Deutsche Bank As Part Of Democrats' Probe Of Trump Finances

Trump Attorneys Threaten Legal Action Against His Accounting Firm if They Comply with Dems’ Subpoena Report: House Dems Subpoena Deutsche Bank, Others For Trump Docs
Patty Aguilar | 18 April, 2019, 20:40

With the Democrats in charge of the House of Representatives, they have been putting heat on the Trump administration and their latest move is to try to shed some light on the president's personal finances.

The full scope of the subpoenas to Deutsche Bank could not be determined.

Both the House Intelligence and Financial Services committees are issuing subpoenas to Deutsche Bank and several other banks mentioned earlier. The Trump Organization is believed to have about $300m in loans still outstanding.

House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) said her committee takes potential manipulation of the USA financial system very seriously.

Alan Garten, the lawyer for the Trump Organization, said the company is considering whether to block Deutsche Bank from complying with the subpoena.

The House Financial Services Committee has always been in talks with Deutsche Bank about Trump-related records, including any tied to Russian Federation.

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"We remain committed to providing appropriate information to all authorized investigations in a manner consistent with our legal obligations", said Deutsche Bank spokeswoman Kerrie McHugh.

Financial Services Committee Chair Maxine Waters, D-Calif., says the use of the financial system for potentially illicit purposes is a serious matter and the investigation is necessary under the committee's oversight authority. She explained that her committee was "exploring these matters, including as they may involve the president and his associates, as thoroughly as possible pursuant to its oversight authority, and will follow the facts wherever they may lead us". Waters asked Republicans to open an investigation into Trump's financial ties and potential money laundering at Deutsche Bank back in 2017 but Republicans, who had a majority in the House at the time, refused.

Oversight's top Republican, Rep. Jim Jordan of OH, said in a statement Friday, "Chairman Cummings's announcement of a subpoena to a private company to pry into the President's personal finances is an astonishing abuse of this Committee's authority and a disgraceful departure from the fair and legitimate oversight he promised". Cummings said Mazars had requested a "friendly subpoena", citing laws and rules that the firm said required a subpoena before it could issue such records. The bank is reported to have played a critical role in sustaining Trump's real estate empire by providing him critical high-risk loans at a time when the businessman was having difficulty securing funds from other institutions. These business dealings began when Trump was still a private citizen but seems to have continued when Trump became president. "If you have questions concerning the investigative activities of the committees, we would refer you to the committees themselves".

Cummings had said he meant to issue a "friendly subpoena" because Mazars USA had requested it from the committee before providing records.

Possible financial leverage wasn't mentioned in Attorney General William Barr's four-page summary of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's findings from his 22-month probe of Russian election interference.

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